By Jide Ajani
In this session with Lagos State governor, Babatunde Raji Fashola, he explains the style of administration that has been put in place in the state such that successive governments can build and improve on what has been achieved so far. He also takes a swipe at President Goodluck
Lagos has been experiencing some urban renewal. Is this renewal an attempt at taking Lagos back to some forgotten development plan, or a haphazard work in progress?
If you follow our communication on policy statement closely, you will notice that I said from the beginning of my tenure that this was going to be a government of method; that we are going to be methodical in things that we will embark upon. Everything that we have done so far had been based on very rigorous examination of what the problems are, what the choices of solutions are and how to prioritise in order to make them sustainable. One of the first things we did after assumption of office was to conduct a trip round the state; I commissioned a team based on this to go and ask the citizens and residents around the state to specifically tell the governor, ‘what do you want him to do for you?’
That was the beginning of our local government tour. The results that came showed us that there were six main items: roads, drainages, schools, health, jobs and power. But we wanted to validate that and we went for town hall meetings in every local government. And while those things resonated across, they resonated differently. In some local governments, they wanted roads first. In others, they preferred schools. In some places, their drainages were their main concern. This formed the basis of our first full year budget in office (2008 budget). And we have kept faith with this approach.