SPEECH DELIVERED BY HIS EXCELLENCY, BABATUNDE RAJI FASHOLA (SAN), ON OCCASION OF HIS 2800 DAYS IN OFFICE AT THE LTV AUDITORIUM ON TUESDAY, JANUARY 27TH 2015
Distinguished Ladies and Gentlemen, eminent Lagosians, I welcome you warmly once again to our traditional 100 day briefing on the state of our State and the progress report on our social contract.
This is the 28th consecutive time that our administration will give this kind of report, either through me directly or through the members of the State Executive Council.
As usual, I will start with our Article of Faith, which is the budget, because it is the disciplined, committed and rigorous application of the budget that manifests in the progress that we report.
In the fourth and final quarter of 2014, our budget performed at 77%, and if you add this to the cumulative, 1st, 2nd and 3rd quarter performances, what you will get is a total budget performance of 83% for 2014.
That is why I am alarmed when I hear a candidate hiding under the umbrella seeking to take this job display so much frightening ignorance about budgeting when he says we spend 3% on education in Lagos State.
Although when I pointed out this error, his script writers have written a recant for him saying that the 3% was for primary education.
He is still wrong.
Primary education is a constitutional responsibility of the Local Governments and their total expenditure on salaries of teachers, building and repair of schools alone is not 3%.
Every serious and self-respecting Lagosian must see not only the ignorance of that candidate but his lack of experience and preparation.
I will now acquaint you with some of the milestones we achieved and the services we rendered in the last 100 days as a result of the dedicated work of our public servants.
Our budget implementation impacted public power and electricity supply even though it is not our responsibility.
But we refused to surrender and fold our hands at the failure of a national government that prides itself on the size of the economy, when her citizens live in darkness.
We completed the public lighting on 11 kilometers of road network between Ikorody Road, Jibowu and Murtala Mohammed Way up to Oyingbo on the 24th October 2014.
This will benefit motorists who drive at night, improve security in the area, and afford traders an opportunity to trade late into the night and earn extra income as we have seen in other areas like Obalende, Oshodi, Alimosho, Bariga and Somolu, where we have intervened, with street lighting.
On October 29, 2014, we commissioned the Mainland Independent Power Plant, the 4th IPP since 2007 which is dedicated to serve the Ikeja High Court, the Ikeja Magistrate Court, Ikeja Water Works, the State Police Command and LASUTH, our teaching hospital.
So our 2014 budget has impacted healthcare, access to justice, water supply and security.
And while I am still on power supply, I am happy to report to you that the first set of 172 schools and 7 Primary Healthcare Centres that I promised will receive dedicated solar power in my 2700 day address have started coming on stream.
We have handed over the solar power system in Epe Primary Healthcare Centre on January 6, 2015 and 2 (two solar power systems for the Model College in Meiran Alimosho).
One will serve the school during the day and the second serves the dormitory and hostel of the students at night.
The one in Kankon Badagry is ready along with others that are being rapidly completed and these facilities, with regular but minimum maintenance, will serve for 25 years.
Gradually, one by one, by God, and by the dedication of our workers and the faith of taxpayers we will put the shame of darkness that a failed government and umbrella party has imposed on our children in schools, and on patients in hospitals behind us.
These solar power systems will shed light on their failure, and illuminate our pathway to change.
Incidentally while the umbrella candidate in Lagos does not see any good in our public school system, he calls our children’s performance “a failure,” I am happy to report progress in the education of our children.
We continue to inspire our children to improve on their performance. They are not failures like the leader of their party who admitted his failure.
It is clear that the language of failure is spreading in their party, and their candidate in Lagos has caught the bug of failure.
Out of 21 PDP states he could only mention 3 states when they gave him the microphone to speak in Lagos.
This is a 14% knowledge of states in his party. Our children have done better than this.
They are the party of failed people and failed promises.
Our children will succeed because their generation will not fail.
It is on this note that I am happy to report progress in education during the last 100 days.
At the 19th Junior Engineers, Technicians and Scientists competition, popularly called JETS, which held in Abuja from 7th – 14th December 2014, by the Federal Ministry of Education and 36 state Ministries of Education and the FCT, Lagos State emerged as the overall best state with the following results:
• 1st Position in Inter-state quiz competition
• 1st Position in National Theme Project
• 1st Position in Free Choice Project
• 1st and 3rd Positions in Physics
• 2nd Position in Biology
• 3rd and 4th Positions in Mathematics
• 5th Position in Agricultural Science
• Miss Inaugwu Kelechi, from Lagos State Model College, Kankon, Badagry, emerged at the best female JETS student at the end of the competition
They won 3 (THREE) Trophies, 9 (NINE) Gold medals and 2 (TWO) Bronze medals.
I am very proud of those students who represented our state.
1. Inuagwu Kelechi
2. Ogbaji Kendra
3. Shamusideen Ibrahim
4. Ugwu Ikechukwu
5. Amaechi Modestus
6. Onyeka Kasiso
7. Fatoye Fisayo
8. Omosowon Abiola
I am also grateful to the teachers:
1. Mr. A.O. Babatunde
2. Mr. Henry A. Unogu
3. Mr. Emmanuel O. Ogundare
4. Mr. Michael O. Suberu
5. Mr. O. Ogunsanya
6. Mr. O. O. Lawal
And the coordinators and facilitators:
1. Mrs. O.O Obafemi
2. Mr. A. O. Aberuagba
3. Mr. Adebayo Ibiyeye
They will not fail.
Apart from power and education, we were busy in the housing sector.
We successfully held the 9th and 10th draws of the LagosHoms Scheme, where we demonstrated that a well implemented budget can provide shelter for ordinary people.
We also completed the Agbowa Housing Scheme in partnership with First World settlement and will commence our rent to own scheme from here.
The response of our opponents to our housing programme is a bundle of their expertise – LIES, DECEPTION and cosmetic responses.
They have not built any, but their candidate says he will teach us how to build low cost housing like Alhaji Jakande.
When he gets to talk to Alhaji Jakande, he will be told that the Naira was a stronger currency at the time and was not the devalued currency their party has turned it into today.
It is obvious that he does not understand that at over 210 to $1, and at 24% interest rate, prices of building materials are going to rise. This is not a bold idea as he calls it, it is bold and stark ignorance.
Their equally ignorant spokespersons, accuse us of selling a house for N 124m. I have news for them; we are not profligates like them, who spend over N 2 Trillion Naira importing petrol that we can produce. The sum of N 124m will build a block of 12 (twelve) flats, which we offer to citizens on a mortgage of 10 years at 9.5%.
Their candidate in Lagos says he has a bold idea to give you value for money.
We have set up a Public Procurement system which is already setting an example across the country.
Let him ask his party and Government at the Centre to lead by example; by showing the same value for money in the procurement of N2 Trillion worth of petroleum products.
Please ask him what value of petroleum products Nigerians received for this unbudgeted expenditure?
Nigerians know that the value is in SURE pockets and TAN.
While they have no housing estate they can point to, they either divert our money or share it and then go and borrow $300m from the World Bank, while they cannot account for $20b and want to give all Nigerians $300m (about N63b at 210 to $1.00) for mortgage refinancing.
Is it N 63 Billion that will solve Nigeria’s housing problem? It sounds like the N10 change they recently offered on petrol.
What they are saying in effect is that all Nigerians who need homes should go and take a mortgage at a bank, at 24%, and all of us should come and share N63bn to refinance the mortgage loan.
This is their half-baked housing policy for Nigeria. Where are the houses?
If this is transformation in the housing sector, may it never come to Lagos.
Finally, they say that we are building for the elite.
I must commend Lagosians who resisted their attempt to stop the Ilubirin Housing project. Those who pass through the 3rd Mainland Bridge every day can see the housing units rising up, block by block, financed by your taxes.
You will see the same thing in Ibeshe in Ikorodu, in Ajara in Badagry, in Alausa behind the Secretariat, in Oko-Oba in Agege, on the Gbagada Highway, in Igbogbo in Ikorodu, in Sangotedo in Eti-Osa, in Badia in Ijora, in Odo-ona-Osa in Agbowa, and piling work is in progress in Agiliti in Agboyi Ketu, while Mushin, Igando, and Ilupeju have been completed.
If it is the elite who live in these areas we are proud to provide service for them. We are a Government of all our people.
In the area of Health Care, apart from the Epe Primary Health care centre which is now a 24-Hour service centre because of the Solar Power, we achieved a major milestone in local capacity building.
We performed the first cochlear implant surgery in Lagos successfully. What this means is that the patient, who was deaf, can now hear again.
It opens a new window of opportunities and possibilities to people who cannot hear or who have hearing defects because I have directed that the programme be expanded. With your taxes we can extend it to those who cannot afford it.
Our budget impact was also felt in the area of security.
We successfully completed the Area C Police Command, a Federal structure, and we have also completed Elemoro, Alimosho and Ilashe Area Commands that will shortly be handed over.
We have installed computers, servers, data back up and record keeping facilities powered by solar in 97 Police Stations across Lagos.
We handed over the first of these in Ogudu just a few days ago.
Let me be clear that this is not our responsibility. But when a government and a party choose to export your money in private jets in the search for security equipment, we must respond to support Policemen and women who have shown a great commitment to keeping all of us safe in spite of neglect by their employer, who denied them a merry Christmas by not paying their salaries.
I am sure that the allowances we support the Rapid Response Squad (RRS) with from your taxes would have helped to make Christmas less bleak for them and their families.
Instead of supporting the Police, they are busy dismantling the system we have put in place here, while we are planning how to provide more cars for patrol for each police station.
Their latest move is to re-deploy the Commander of the RRS, the unit that responds to violent crimes like robberies, out of the State.
This was the officer with whom we built the Security Trust Fund that has helped to support Government funding for the State.
But as if this was not enough, they have shown the contempt they have for your safety by re-deploying the AIG Zone 2, a few weeks to election.
This was a man who had served here as Commissioner of Police and knows the terrain and the recent crime patterns.
Now that they have done all these, they have removed all banners of the APC candidate on all electricity poles using security and replaced them with that of the President; asking you to vote for him.
Will you vote for PDP?
In their desperation, they removed the banners of Glo and Huawei, businesses that have paid for adverts, therefore causing income losses to the Local Governments who have the constitutional responsibility for advertising, which is carried out through LASAA for uniformity.
What they are telling you is simple, the Constitution is not as important as a vote for the President or a vote for PDP, yet they violate businesses and claim that they want to create jobs.
This is the same way they cancelled the 35350 short code platform we set up to raise funds for the campaign of our party through the NCC, yet they claim they love the youth.
The 5400 transactions, mainly by the youths, who contributed N100 each using the text message platform and the many more who have been denied the use of the platform now know what their definition of love is.
It means that the youth have no right to freely choose or express themselves.
Distinguished ladies and gentlemen, whenever I thought I have seen the worst of this party and their government they just surprise me.
It requires only common sense to realize that when elections are coming up, it is not unusual for investors to be wary about our commitments. Sometimes they often wait until after the results of election are known to make new commitments.
Yet the umbrella party and its government does not seem to understand the danger to investment, commerce and the economy, when it begins to fly a kite about postponing the election because defeat is imminent and change is on the way.
But let me go back to development and continue my report by also telling you that sports and youth development were impacted by our budget, because our work does not stop even in the height of electioneering.
Our annual Governor’s Tennis Cup held in spite of Ebola, because we showed that we will not change our lifestyle because of a virus. And we also held the annual Governor’s Boxing Championship in December, the 6th consecutive edition since its inauguration in 2009.
We completed the Oba Ogunji Transfer Loading Station in Agege to increase our waste management, waste sorting and recycling capacity.
On December 1. 2014, we handed over 32 new fire trucks to increase our fire fighters’ capacity to fight fire and protect lives and property.
We formally opened the Igando Resettlement Centre, to complement the one in Agbowa, as a place of refuge for people who are displaced by disasters.
On December 9, 2014, we unveiled the final version of the Lagos State Residents Registration Card that will be issued to all Lagosians and help plan service delivery better.
On January 6, 2015, we opened the new Epe High Court, dedicated in honour of Late Justice Ligali Ayorinde, a former Chief Judge, and I am pleased to inform you that the new court house for Ikeja and Badagry have also been completed.
These will give a lot of relief to litigants and citizens who need to use the court services especially in Epe and Badagry who will now not need to travel long distances.
These new court houses also mean new jobs in the formal and informal sectors. Court staff, security men, cleaners and maintenance staff and so much more that will be needed to support the smooth running of the court system.
Distinguished ladies and gentlemen, there is a lot more that happened in terms of projects, but I will not take any more time about them.
We are more than a Government of projects, there were also life defining policies and legislations.
On December 1, 2014, I signed an Executive Order establishing a Sex Offenders Register and making the reporting of sexual offences a compulsory matter in Lagos.
This is aimed at deterring sex offenders who now know that we will keep a record of their action and it is hoped that this will protect victims of sexual offences who are mainly women.
On the same day, I signed the bill establishing the Lagos State Infrastructure Asset Management Agency into law.
For many years we have decried the lack of a maintenance culture in our society without taking concrete action to address it.
For our party and our Government, a lack of maintenance was not a problem. It was a huge opportunity to create jobs, take young people out of unemployment and invest them with the power to say every morning – I am going to work.
That Agency has been working as an office, while waiting for the law, it has undertaken an audit of all government assets, hospitals, schools, court buildings, the offices and others, and it has designed a template for costing maintenance all of which is now incorporated into the 2015 budget.
This is one of the reasons why our budget now has a higher recurrent ratio of 49% to a capital ratio of 51%.
All our maintenance contracts will be classified under this recurrent, but the good thing is that it is a recurrent expenditure that is healthy. It creates jobs.
This year alone, we will be issuing over 600 contracts, ranging from N2m – N5m for the maintenance of our secondary schools as a start; to small contractors and artisans and businesses.
The graduates of our Technical Colleges have been trained on how to set up their small companies to benefit from this process.
Of course our pensioners also felt the impact of our budget, because on the 30th December 2014, we held our 15th Bond presentation programme and paid out N1.5 Billion to 243 retirees.
This was at a time when the PDP Federal Government could not pay worker’s salaries.
Ladies and gentlemen, as I render account to you today, my tenure has only 121 (One Hundred and Twenty One) days left to run out.
In a few days you will be choosing new leaders at the Presidential, Gubernatorial, National and State Assembly Elections.
Apart from voting for Buhari and Osinbajo, Ambode and Adebule, you will also need to vote for APC legislators in the Senate, House of Representatives and the State House of Assembly who will enact laws and pass resolutions to assist them to do their work.
At the national level, the wind of change is blowing, please do not be left behind, join it, flow with it and own it.
At the State level please stay away from bold ignorance, stay away from inexperience, stay away from deception, vote for the continuity of what we have worked together to build.
Nothing good has come from the PDP. And if their party leader has said in Lagos that he has failed, do you want to vote for a party led by somebody who has failed?
Go and get your PVC to rescue Nigeria from bad governance and keep Lagos working.
Thank you, God bless you all.
Long live the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
Eko o ni baje o!
Babatunde Raji Fashola, SAN
Governor of Lagos State
January 27, 2015
SPEECH DELIVERED BY HIS EXCELLENCY, BABATUNDE RAJI FASHOLA (SAN), ON OCCASION OF HIS 2800 DAYS IN OFFICE AT THE LTV AUDITORIUM ON TUESDAY, JANUARY 27TH 2015