Lagos Assembly seeks refund of N52b expended on repairs of federal roads
The Lagos State House of Assembly on Tuesday urged the Federal Government to refund the N52 billion spent by the state government on repair of federal roads over the years.
The lawmakers also called for urgent rehabilitation of dilapidated federal roads impeding commercial activities and causing hardship to residents.
This followed an observation made by the Deputy Majority Leader, Mr Olumuyiwa Jimoh, on matter of urgent public importance on the floor of the House.
Jimoh, who congratulated former Gov. Babatunde Fashola on his appointment as Minister of Power, Works and Housing, said he had no doubt he would replicate his performance in the state at the federal level.
“It should be at the heart of his assignments, and perhaps the uppermost; the refund of over N52 billion the federal government owes the state for repairing federal roads.
“The minister should hasten the payment of the fund which we have expended on federal roads.
“There are some federal roads in this state, the commercial hub of this country and sub-Sahara Africa, begging for attention,” he said.
Mr Abiodun Tobun (APC-Epe I) also congratulated Fashola for a well-deserved appointment.
He said: ” Lagos State belongs to all Nigerians because all families have one or two relations in the state.
“Most business outlets have their headquarters in Lagos. The Federal Government earns the large part of its Value Added Tax from this state.
“Fashola should ensure that all the federal roads are developed and the monies owed the state for repairing federal roads should be refunded.”
Mr Lanre Ogunyemi (APC-Ojo II), on his part, said: “Greater chunk of our resources in this state has gone to repairing federal roads.
“If we can get the huge amount of money owed us, it will go a long way to ameliorate the hardship Lagos residents pass through on many state roads.”
Mr David Setonji (APC-Badagry II) complained bitterly of the state of Lagos-Badagry Expressway and urged Fashola to give priority to federal roads in the state.
“We want the Federal Government, through the Minister of Power, Works and Housing, to give attention to federal roads in the state, to make economic activities thrive more.
“The state of many expressways in the state is a disgrace for a former capital of the country.
“Let the world know that Lagos deserves special allocation, just as Abuja, to arrest issues of perennial infrastructure decay,” Setonji said.
Mr Sola Giwa (APC-Lagos Island) said that the former governor was up to the task given to him by President Muhammadu Buhari.
Giwa, who also urged Fashola to facilitate the refund of monies spent of federal roads in the state, noted that the state of Apapa roads had been affecting smooth commercial activities.
The Speaker of the House, Mr Mudashiru Obasa, said it was important to remind Fashola of the challenges facing the state.
“We must write a letter to the minister to call their attention to the urgent need to repair federal roads in the state.
“It is better to make this appeal to him before the work load of handling three major areas of government becomes much.
“Fashola was an actualiser when he was the governor; he knows about the problems of Lagos State.
“Being a governor of the state for eight years, he is aware of the level of deprivation of local government fund and most of the federal roads done.
“Lagos-Sagamu, Lagos-Abeokuta, Ikorodu and so many federal roads are begging for attention. If we have good roads, most of the complaints will be gone,” he said.
The speaker, who expressed confidence in the ability of Fashola, said he was sure that the former governor would not disappoint people of the state.
The House adjourned till Nov.23