Wednesday, 29 March 2017

Tinubu lauds Ambode’s performance despite inheriting huge debt

DESPITE the huge debt he inherited, Lagos State Governor Akinwunmi Ambode has performed well, All Progressives Congress (APC) stalwart Asiwaju Bola Tinubu said yesterday. Tinubu, who was governor between 1999 and 2007, recommended Ambode for commendation. He spoke at the inauguration of a bridge linking Aboru and Abesan and five adjoining roads in the Agbado Oke-Odo Local Council Authority of Alimosho Local Government Area in commemoration of his 65th birthday. Addressing a large crowd of residents, the former Lagos helmsman said: “I was worried when you (Ambode) took over, not about your credibility, character or capacity, but because however wise or smart a man is, if there is no resource to back the ideas, the production would be zero; progress would be zero. “When you (Ambode) took over, I know you inherited a burden of debt. The debt profile of Lagos was high. I was wondering how you will reengineer and face the challenges to make progress. “Today, I can see your report card; you have scored well, you have shown prudence, especially in the use of resources of the state.” Tinubu praised the governor for re-engineering the state’s financial structure, noting that Ambode did not betray the trust reposed in him. He said: “You didn’t disappoint us. Ambode is silently achieving, religiously executing and brilliantly giving results for Lagos State. “All over Lagos, we are seeing the results. At Oshodi, on our way down here, we can see what is happening there; that place is a construction site. It used to be a den of robbers. But what are going on there now are developmental activities for the benefit of the entire country.” Tinubu thanked Ambode for marking his birthday with the inauguration of projects, describing it as a reflection of a very good governor, who is a thinker and a doer. “Today, you (Ambode) have given me a good birthday present. This is a great opportunity for me to be very proud again,” Tinubu said. Ambode said the projects being inaugurated were parts of his administration’s drive of inclusiveness in the state’s growth. Exactly a year ago, Ambode said he visited the community and saw the terrible state in which the road network was. He was touched. He said he directed the Public Works Corporation (PWC) to move to the site three weeks after his visit. Ambode said: “This project is an indication that our government listens and responds to the needs of our people. We will continue to deliver first-class infrastructure to improve the lives of our people, boost the economy and create jobs for our youths. On your part, I urge you to take ownership and protect the infrastructure; use them appropriately so that they can serve you for a long time. “Beyond this, we are very grateful to the contractor on this project, Olalekan Adebiyi, who has deemed it necessary to contribute to the healthcare of this community by donating a Primary Healthcare Centre to the Alimosho people. Thank you very much, Mr. Adebiyi. “On our part, we have equipped the health centre and provided a brand new ambulance which will be stationed at this centre to respond to any emergency in the community. A certificate will be issued to the donor to enable him offset his tax obligations. We hope this will encourage other well-meaning Lagosians to take up Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) activities within their communities. “In addition to this, we are celebrating our mentor; a visionary leader, the brain behind the 21st Century Lagos, His Excellency, the former Governor of Lagos State, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu today. We have decided to honour him by commissioning the construction of a network of roads within the boundaries of Lagos and Ogun states.” The roads include Church Street, Giwa Street, Victor Fagbemi Road, Ogunfayo Road, Ogundare Street, Salami Kazeem, all totalling 5.5km, with drainage, walkways and street lights. The roads will ease the pressure on the Abeokuta Expressway, linking residents with Iyana Ipaja, LASU-Iba Expressway, the governor said. Ambode identified many roads for rehabilitation, adding that work would begin next week on the listed roads to give the area a facelift. They include: 6.4km -Ikola Road with Odo Obasanjo Bridge (from Ipaja/Command to Ilo River); 1.75km – Ogunseye Road (from Ajasa/Command to Ikola Road); 1.5km – Oko Filling Road (from AIT to Ilo River); 620m Osenatu Ilo road (from Ibari Road to Ilo River); 3.1km – Amikanle road (from AIT to Ogunseye Road); 1.9km – Aina Aladi road (from AIT to Ilo River) and 1.4km – Aiyetoro Road with a bridge (from New Market/Ishefun Road intersection to Ilo River). Osun State Governor Rauf Aregbesola said it was obvious that Ambode did not only start well, but he is doing well. He solicited the cooperation of the people to engender further dividends of democracy and good governance. The governor urged Ambode to continue the development of Alimosho, saying that there were many other roads and bridges requiring upgrade. Other guests at the event were Senators Solomon Olamilekan, Ganiu Solomon, Isiaka Adeleke and Bisi Yusuf.


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