ALL PROTOCOLS DULY OBSERVED.
I welcome you all to the year 2010 Amuwo-Odofin Local Government Economic Summit. This is the second edition of the Summit since its commencement last year. The objective of this Summit is to discuss how to reshape the economy of Amuwo-Odofin.
In retrospect, on February 10 and 11, 2009, the 1st Economic Summit was held by this Local Government. It was a productive Summit which comprised Stakeholders from different walks of life, within and outside the Local Government to tackle the challenges facing the economy of this local government.
The Summit was organized because on assumption of office of this administration on October 30, 2008, we were confronted with a myriad of challenges which had been left unattended they include, environmental degradation, lack of maintenance of roads and poor infrastructure within the local government. Quite disheartening was the Local Government’s Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) which was abysmally prior to our being in the saddle of leadership.
To graphically illustrate this sectorally, in the area of health, our Primary Healthcare Centres were in unspeakable shape, there was shortage of medical personnel as only one doctor serviced the four primary healthcare centres; facilities in the primary healthcare centres were either in total state of disrepair or almost unusable and there was no drugs for patients.
Our infrastructure and faciltities were in a state of decay; the Legislative and Executive chambers were unbefitting, our roads were almost unmotorable, and physical facilities and structures in our schools were not conducive for learning.
The value on Human Capital Development had been eroded, the economic potentials of Amuwo Odofin have been under-tapped and under-utilised, the historical symbolism of FESTAC town, looking back to the its establishment in 1977, had been lost as a result of our misplaced values and behaviour and the absence of culture of maintenance; the youth were disempowered and no conscious effort was made to mobilize the people for inclusive and participatory governance.
All these shortcomings deficiencies that gave birth to the first Amuwo Odofin LG Economic Summit held in 2009. Stakeholders and different interest groups within and outside Amuwo-Odofin LG were called to a roundtable to brain-storm and proffer possible suggestions to the aforementioned challenges. And this administration, placing much value on positive views, set in motion, the implementation of these suggestions that were proffered. These suggestions which formed the communique issued at the end of the Summit became a working tool in the management of the economy of the local government and we are satisfied that we have made appreciable progress in our journey so far.
At this point, it is pertinent to showcase our modest achievements since the 2009 Summit.
In the 2009 Summit, we promised that free Basic-Primary Health Services would be provided for all, while special attention would be given to the aged and children. Health Centers would be sited in strategic locations of the Local Government while existing ones would be upgraded to modern standard. We have embarked on the rehabilitation of all the Primary Healthcare Centres (PHCs). At present, all the Four (4) PHCs at FESTAC, Mile 2, Igbologun, and Sagbokoji have been upgraded to standard, furnished and fitted with modern equipment. Modern building materials such as aluminum sliding windows, suspended ceiling, Tiles, Flat Screen TV were provided. This was done with the support of IBTC Bank Plc on the principle of Corporate Social Responsibility. Mile 2 PHC was completely renovated and upgraded with interlocking stones, suspended ceiling, and a complete re-roofing was done. Same was done at Igbologun and Sabokoji PHCs. Currently, both PHCs at FESTAC and Mile 2 offer 24 hours services to patients.
The Local Government has also partnered with Profice Nigeria Limited, a pharmaceutical firm, which now operates a pharmacy within the Council’s secretariat at a discounted rate of 10% for every drug sold, while children from 0 – 16yrs and senior citizens of 60yrs and above are given drugs free. Non-pensionable staff of the local government are also given treatement and free drugs.
We are also partnering with El- Lab Laboratories Ltd and Sums Laboratory Ltd to offer laboratory services to residents at 10% discount.
We have engaged the services of 8 Corper doctors and 5 doctors to complement the effort of the only doctor that had been serving the four PHC in the Local Government. In recognition of all these, Lagos State Government under the leadership of His Excellency, Mr. Babatunde Raji Fashola, SAN, the Executive Governor of Lagos State honoured our Local Government as the best local government on health delivery service in 2009.
Similarly, at the 2009 Summit we promised to give attention to all structures and infrastructure that were in a state of disrepair, including bad roads, and blocked drainages. Today, we have been able to open all blocked drainages in FESTAC.
We have rehabilitated 2nd, 5th, 7th Avenues and 6th Avenue link road, while 31, 32, 51, 52, 71, 11, 41 roads and 3rd gate were completely resurfaced, parts of 4th Avenue and 23 road have been rehabilitated, while the rehabilitation of 21, 72 and 24 roads are on-going. To protect these roads from wearing out, our administration as a matter of policy, have banned heavy duty trucks and containers from plying the roads. Although at the initial stage it was difficult for the heavy duty trucks owners to comply with this instruction, but now, our instruction is being adhered to.
Still on road construction, we have completed the construction of the Circular road phase 1, 2 and 3 at the Amuwo Odofin Low Cost Housing Estate, Mile 2. The road shall be commissioned alongside the newly constructed 1-storey Administrative block and staff canteen. The administrative block has 22 office spaces and equipped with conveniences, Close Circuit Television (CCTV) and wireless internet access.
As projected in 2009, our administration had the proposal of rehabilitation of schools. We promised to start with the Igbologun primary school at the riverine area and FESTAC Universal Primary School 1, 3rd Avenue, Festac Town. At Igbologun, we demolished the dilapidated structure and rebuilt a block of class room, while other schools such UPE School, 3rd Avenue; New Town Primary School, 3rd Avenue; 512 Road Primary School; 7th Avenue (D-Close) Primary School; Progress Primary School, 7th Avenue R-Close; AUD Primary School, Ado-Soba; Central Primary School, 5th Avenue have been renovated.
We have distributed 220,000 Exercise Books and 13,380 Uniforms to Public Primary Schools in the Local Government; while 44 Cleaners and 20 Lawn Managers have been employed to maintain the schools’ environment.
1n 2009, the Local government distributed, free of charge, 500 JAMB forms and 600 GCE forms and gave free tutorial classes to indigent students. This year, we have given out 500 JAMB forms and 600 GCE forms free of charge and offered free tutorial classes. Just recently, we organized a first-of-its-kind Education Summit in Lagos State. As part of the Summit, select recommended literature texts namel: Romeo & Juliet, Macbeth and the Lord of the Flies - for senior secondary schools in Lagos State, were shown to students to prepare them for the 2009 Nov / Dec GCE Examinations. We also built 15 ultra-modern toilets with boreholes and treatment plant.
Also in 2009, Amuwo Odofin Local won the Spelling B competition in Primary Category, represented by Chidera Amakor. The Local Government in honouring her excellent performance offered her Scholarship tto complete her primary education.
INFORMATION DISSEMINATION / ICT
As discussed at the 2009 Summit, the local government has created a Website - www.amuwo-odofin.gov.ng - to keep everybody abreast with information and activities of the LG and the management of the website has been entrusted to a firm of IT consultants – NEXUS ASPIRE.
For the benefit of those who do not have easy access to the internet, the Local Government’s quarterly newsletter – Amuwo Herald continues to complement the website by keeping people abreast of happenings in the Local Government.
In order not to be left out in a world rapidly becoming a global village, the local government purchased 20 brand new laptops for the various Heads of Departments/Units and Royal Fathers, purchased 10 desktop computers for the departments to increase their efficiency in the area of information management / processing; provided office electronics for Legislative Chamber; engaged the service of an I.T. Consultant towards achieving Computer Literacy among staff through continuous training. We have also provided the Information Unit with a Nissan X-terra Jeep for optimal performance and made regular Press releases to keep our friends from the Fourth Estate of the realm abreast of developments in the Local Government.
The Local Government organized Two weeks training workshop on e – learning for top functionaries form of the local government in preparatory to e- governance programme being put in place by the local government.
We projected in the last Summit that our administration would see to the management, beautification and development of our environment. We have engaged the services of 3 supervisors, 21 drain dockers, 6 grass cutters, 3 dumper drivers, 1 tipper driver, 8 dumper loaders and 3 tipper loaders who ensure the maintainance and regular clearing of refuse and drainages to de-flood the areas; we have planted 2,500 trees to cut down carbon emission and planted flowers for beautification of our environment; fumigated markets; engaged the services of 2 motorized Street Sweeping Machines, to keep our environment clean; provided a Hillux Vehicle to improve Environmental Unit performance; provided 30 tanks of 500 litres of water to support the watering of our plants; provided 22 Dust-Bins which were distributed to all parts of the Local Government; purchased a Hiace Bus for the Environmental Department for enforcement of environmental laws; Purchased 5 Lawnmowers for cutting of our flowers; purchased a swamp buggy to open blocked drainages and two dumpers to cart away refuse.
We had as well projected in 2009 Summit that our administration will put in place security network that would promote peace and tranquility within the local government by working in conjunction with the Nigeria Police, community leaders and other security agencies , to complement the efforts of the Lagos State Government to maintain peace and order and protect lives and properties of our people Recently , we donated two (2) patrol Hillux Ford cars to the Nigeria Police, FESTAC, to support their surveillance activity; purchased 10 motorbikes for Security Operatives in our Local Government; provided 100 VPN VISA Phones to Security Operatives, Political Office Holders and community leaders for combating crimes and protecting lives and property; purchased 50 Raincoats and Boots for Security Operatives, Regular monthly meetings with Security Operatives with a view to achieving a peaceful environment for residents.
In 2009, we promised that 205 people will be employed. The administration has employed over 480 non-pensionable staff into various units / departments in the local government they include staff in the office of the Chairman and Vice Chairman, information, vocational training centre, cleaners / gardeners, drain docks (in-charge of cleaning the drains and gutters), Green Club (for tree planting and nurturing trees), Street Sweepers (cleaning the streets and mopping up sand).; Mar ‘O’ War (for enforcement of environmental laws), health (Nurses, Community Health Extension Workers; Environmental Health Officers, 1 Health consultant, 1 Engineering consultant).
It is noteworthy to state that development is also taking place in sports in the Local Government. In 2009, Planners FC of Amuwo won the MTN Lagos State Street Soccer competition and came 2nd in the second edition and the Local Government gave them $300 each as cash reward. The Maiden edition of Guilder Ultimate 5-A-Side Football competition was also won by the Planners FC of Amuwo.
Just recently, a football club Bablo FC from the Local Government won the 2010 MTN Lagos Street Soccer. And a cash reward of N750,000 was given to the team to encourage them.
These successes have made us proud being clubs that came out of this Local Government. On the basis of these victories, our administration has picked thirty (30) students from various secondary schools to form a junior team named Amuwo Sparklers. Amuwo Sparklers was borne out of the Vision of Lagos State Government to revive football league in Lagos State. And the club is preparing for the Lagos State Junior League that will be coming up later this year.
Similarly, our local government made left footprints in the just concluded Lagos state sport festival “Ibile 2010”. Our athletes made us proud.
The Internally Generated Revenue ( IGR) has been improved by 435% since our administration got into office. On the basis of this improvement, a Toyota Hiace bus was acquired in addition to the existing Utility vehicles for the Revenue Unit for optimal performance.
In 2009, we projected that Branded Mass Transit Buses, Okada, Tricycles (Keke NAPEP) and I- Taxis would be provided in conjunction with private owners to facilitate shuttle services within the Local Government as a whole at a reduced cost. Presently, through Public Private Partnership (PPP), we have gotten some shuttle buses for easy transportation within Festac and Mile 2 areas of the local government. We have acquired 2 T23 Half Roofed Personnel Carrier Boats; Yamaha 75hp out-Board Engine; and Safety equipment (including life jackets) for the carrier boat.
Our administration has been able to mobilize youth within and outside this local government through the 2009 FESTAC FIESTA. The fiesta was intended to encourage talent discovery among the youth.
Also, this year Children’s Day was organized in a grand style. We celebrated it with Tosin Jegede (a foremost 1986 kid musical star) Foundation and Baba Dee (an international music star). The programme featured some entertainment stars such as Faze, Black Face, Sound Sultan, and Jeffery Daniels, an international recognized music star from America, who is known with a popular group called Shalama. He taught Michael Jackson how to perform the Moon walk dance. These Artistes in collaboration with this Local Government, helped our children expressed their God’s given talents through drama presentation, fashion parade, painting, singing, and other entertainments.
We shall be organizing the 1st Miss Amuwo Beauty Pageant that will be coming up on September 18, 2010 at this same venue. In Amuwo Odofin, we saw the need to celebrate the beauty and talents of our youth in order to give them sense of belonging, bearing in mind that government exists at the pleasure of the people.
On this note, we are prepared to present the winner of the contest a brand new KIA Picanto Car with driver’s allowance; HITV decoder with 6 months subscription and 12 months allowance. The tenure of the emerging winner—Miss Amuwo shall be for 12 months.
We shall also give consolation prizes such Flat screen TV, Home Theatre, Beauty Products, mobile phones to other contestants to encourage them.
Because of our belief in human capital development, there have been series of training and retraining exercises for the council staff so as to increase work efficiency.
There has been cordial relationship between the management and other members of staff of the council. This administration has fulfilled its pledge of setting aside 10% of our Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) for staff welfare.
After due score-carding on the last economic summit, we thought it wise to organize this 2010 - 2nd Economic Summit. This is intended to identity other key issues yet to be attended, pose challenges and identiofy means by which institutionalised and sustainable structures that can be used to achieve these. These structures are intended to build a dynamic and viable economy that will become focal point and envy in the entire Lagos state. Something that residents and indigenes of the Local Governmnet will be proud about.
I like to use this medium to appreciate the positive contributions of our economic consultant, Baba Omojola, who is part of the economic development we are seeing in Amuwo Odofin today, and Nexus Aspire, Xnet, Fortress Valley and Western Concrete, Golden Tulip, Sunfit, Capital Oil and Gas, Skye Bank, Zenith Bank, Oceanic Bank, El Lab and so many other individuals and groups who have worked with us quitely.
I thank the Residents Associations, Community Leaders, Staff of the local government and other stakeholders for their cooperation and efforts at getting things work.
I want to implore you, the good people of Amuwo Odofin to join hands with us, as you have always done, to shape the economic destiny of our Local Government. This is our government, this is our economy, and this is our future. Let us not relent in the pursuit of our general goal of a better tomorrow for generations yet unborn.
Once again, I welcome you all to the 2010 Economic Summit, and wish you successful deliberations.
Amuwo Odofin o ni baje o
Eko o ni baje o.
Comrade Ayodele Adewale
Amuwo-Odofin Local Government