The Speaker of the Lagos State House of Assembly, Mudashiru Obasa, has expressed hope that the State economy and its prospect has the capacity to bring Nigeria out of its current economic recession.Obasa made this observation while giving his speech after the 2017 budget presentation by the State Governor, Akinwunmi Ambode on Tuesday.
The 2017 budget estimates, which is also deficit represented a difference of N150.52billion compared to 2016 estimate that stood at N662.58 billion.
According to Obasa, “In view of the importance and significance of Nigeria and its population in African economy and that of Lagos State in Nigerian economy, coupled with the fact that the state is recognised as the fifth largest economy in Africa, there is no doubt that Lagos State alone can bring about the economic recovery of this nation, thereby pulling us out of the present economic recession we find ourselves. Hence, I cannot but appeal to the Senate to reconsider their stance on our issue of special status,” the Speaker said.
The Speaker explained further, ”’I will like to add here too that the reports of our last stakeholders’ meetings have been submitted to the Governor. It is expected that the outcome of the constituency meetings has been factored in this budget and will be implemented accordingly.
“As usual, we shall not fail in our duties to painstakingly look at the nitty-gritty of this budget for the purpose of transforming same for the benefits of all Lagosians. I assure you that this House, through effective oversight, will ensure that the Year 2017 budget delivers on its promises to stimulate the economy of the state by focusing on infrastructure development, delivering inclusive growth and prioritizing the welfare of Lagosians.
“Therefore, I enjoin all the Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) to furnish the committees of the House necessary documents that will aid speedy and fruitful passage of the budget. And may I further remind us that our duty to perform oversight function on MDAs is enshrined in Section 128 of the 1999 Constitution (As amended). As such, the cooperation, without any reservation, of all the MDAs is highly needed while we are at work.
Obasa argued that Lagos “has continued to be seen both within and outside our country as the very place where good governance is the norm, which readily explains why our state is home to all Nigerians, having attained the enviable status of a mega city. It is on this note, therefore, that I urge the National Assembly to reconsider the special status we demand.
“It is our duty to see to the welfare of our neighbours by reaching out to the less privileged in our society. We can do this by making it a habit of providing a meal per day to the needy around us. This is an initiative of mine that I plan to do in my community. I likewise encourage us to emulate same,” Obasa said.