Agbaje promises retention of Lagos’ current local councils

THE Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) governorship candidate for Lagos State, Mr Jimi Agbaje, on Sunday said that he would retain the 37 Local Council Development Areas (LCDAs) created by the Chief Bola Tinubu administration, if elected.

Agbaje told newsmen at an interactive session in Lagos that he would grant greater autonomy to the LCDAs and the original 20 local government areas of Lagos State.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the 37 LCDAs created in 2003 by the Alliance for Democracy (AD) Government of Tinubu, had yet to be recognised by the Federal Government.

The Federal Government still deals with Lagos State on the basis of the original 20 local government areas but Lagos State has been running the grassroots through the 20 LGAs and 37 LCDAs.

Agbaje said if elected, his administration would move on from the 20 LGAs and 37 LCDAs.

He said that the LCDAs had been recognised by political parties.

On reconciliation with Chief Musiliu Obanikoro who went to court after losing the governorship ticket to him, Agbaje said that the party had a unity of purpose in the state to take over power from the APC.

He said that the APC administration in the state had good policies, made achievements in some areas, but recorded poor implementation of many policies due to “vested interest”.

“ Vested interest is negatively affecting the socio-economic and political life of the state.

“Vested interest will prefer building commercial houses to constructing low cost houses.

“You cannot have any project in Lagos unless you consider vested interests. It is bondage,’’ he said.

Agbaje said that, if elected, his administration would construct low cost houses and offer free quality health care services through a health insurance model, in partnership with the private sector.

He said that the administration would avoid discriminating against non-indigenes of Lagos and give all residents the opportunity to contribute to the state’s development.

“ PDP will do things differently. We will have the boldness to do it,’’ he said.

Agbaje said that his administration would allocate five per cent of the state procurement project for young entrepreneurs and recent graduates, adding that he would ensure transparent public procurement process.

The governorship candidate also said that the administration would exploit the aquatic nature of the state to develop its economy.

“ We have not tapped on the ocean resources. We will take advantage of our living in water and take what is there to build our economy.

“We will ensure that Epe and Ikorodu are national fisheries processing hubs and the focal points of the new ocean economy,’’ he said.

Agbaje said that his administration would ensure 100,000 vocational and internship places annually as well as local and international certification and standards for artisans and technicians.

He added that the administration would ensure that companies operating in the state employed a certain percentage of their workers from their host communities.

He said that the administration would avoid multiple taxes, cancel tollgates and expand the tax system by meeting the needs of the residents so that they would desire to pay tax. (NAN)



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