As the results of last Saturday’s gubernatorial election held in 29 states of the federation began to trickle in, the imperative for the elected and re-elected governors of Lagos, Rivers, Kano, Delta and Abia states to prioritise the economic self sufficiency of their states as well as work to enhance the economic well-being of their people began to resonate yesterday.
Lagos State, with an economy larger than those of some five West African countries put together, needs to rise to the occasion by applying the state resources in a transparent and development oriented manner. For its mega city status, yet with a chaotic transport system, Babajide Sanwoolu, the newly elected governor of the state, must seek to develop a more efficient transport system for the over 17 million residents of the state.
Roads, education, medicare and other social services must also be given adequate attention by the new government. Projects such as the expansive road and rail works started by former governor Babatunde Fashola to open up the Badagry axis must be prioritized and completed. Not a few believe for the size of its economy, its population and the revenues it generates, Lagos has been underperforming. Although often wrongly measured against other states in the country, its governments have taken a lot for granted and its opaque contracting system and public information hoarding has meant that its citizens are getting shortchanged in so many ways.
Rivers, which houses many oil businesses and allied industries must create a conducive atmosphere for business to thrive. If peace reigns, investors will be willing to invest in the state. Governor Nyesome Wike has done a lot in the area of infrastructure. He must work on improving on security in the state.
For the reelected Governor Ikpeazu of Abia, focus has to be on providing SME-friendly policies to enable the numerous entrepreneurs in the Aba axis to flourish. Small and low interest loans to these crop of entrepreneurs will help improve their business and increase the state’s taxable income.
Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta who is presiding over another oil-rich state must address the problem of unrest in the riverine areas of the state and continue with his job creation scheme. With the talent in the state and the propensity of the people to manage their businesses, he must come up with policies that will empower them economically.
Dapo Abiodun the APC candidate who won in Ogun State, must take advantage of the economic assets of the state and its proximity to Lagos to make Ogun business-friendly. As a businessman, his experience in the private sector will come in handy such that Ogun will continue to survive without total reliance on federal allocation.
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