Home Latest News We’ll have to put searchlight on rural areas to decongest metropolis- Sanwo-Olu’s...

We’ll have to put searchlight on rural areas to decongest metropolis- Sanwo-Olu’s nominee

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IBRAHIM QUADRI

One of the Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu’s nominees, Mr Idris Salako on Saturday said the government would have to invest in rural development to reduce rural-urban migration.

Salako, the 19th nominee to be screened by the Lagos State House of Assembly 16-man Ad-Hoc Committee disclosed this to the committee on Saturday at the Lateef Jakande Auditorium, Assembly Complex, Ikeja.

The committee, headed by the Chief Whip, Hon Rotimi Abiru, a four-term lawmaker representing Somolu Constituency II, had on Thursday screened eight of the 25 nominees, and screened 10 on Friday.

Responding to the committee members’ interrogations on way to reduce rural-urban migration, Salako said that only massive investment in rural social amenities would reduce the trend.

“The government has to provide roads that lead to rural areas to one another and to the major city. We will have to provide the basic amenities required for rural development,” he said.

He said that potable water, good roads, primary healthcare facility, electricity, sewage system among others should be taken to rural areas to make those in the setting comfortable.

Salako, a town planner, said development of other parts of the state would reduce slums and other environmental challenges.

On flooding and slums, he said that the government should do its best to remove any blockage on drainage channel, and reduce slums in the state through massive development of the state.

“We will look at establishing a tribunal to deal with those who contravene the law on encroachment on drain channels and roads.

“There is massive influx of people into Lagos. Many northerners follow each trailer that brings cows to abbatoir in Agege, Lagos and this increases population.

“With this, we cannot capture the movement in and out of Lagos effectively. So, slums are being created and Lagos is expanding.

“We are proposing that the Lagos megacity project done during the time of Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu and former governor Babatunde Raji Fashola should be revisited. With this, we will stem the influx of people to Lagos,” Salako said.

According to him, the state has many megacity plans, but it must try to have a single mega plan.

Salako, who noted that many of the state agencies in building sector lacked adequate manpower or offices to get many things done, said that the government should reduce slums.

“The issue of building collapse cannot be placed on any agency. While we will say some of our colleagues compromise, developers and professionals have roles to play.

“Approvals should be monitored, and LABCA (Lagos State Building Control Agency) has been trying to do this, but they do not have enough facilities, offices and manpower to discharge their duties.

“Each agency should face what it ought to do by law and they should do so at infancy.

“They have the data base of these distressed buildings though the agencies don’t have enough facilities and the finance to do the necessary things they ought to do,” he said.

In his response, Abiru expressed satisfaction in Salako’s answers and promised to get back to him through the Governor.

Since the commencement of the exercise on Thursday, only one nominee, Dr Wale Ahmed was given the privikege to take a bow and go for being a former member of the House during the Fourth Assembly (1999-2003).

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