Just like two of his predecessors-Babatunde Raji Fashola and Akin Ambode, Governor Babajide Olusola Sanwo-Olu burst into political stage unheralded.
With no trace of profound political antecedents, except only having stint as one of the crowded cabinet commissioners during the administration of Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, its germane to submit that Sanwo-Olu rise from obscurity to political prominence was dramatic.
With no war chest, no visible political bloc nor influence, yet the governor has arrived and he’s admirably & comfortably presiding over the affairs of the most populous, most strategic and richest state in Nigeria and perhaps, one of the three African most sought-after economic enclaves by the global entrepreneurs and world business leaders.
Without argument whatsoever, appreciation and well-deserved honors must be given to political legend of our time, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu not only for his exemplary and commanding leadership qualities, but essentially for his eagle-eye, keen & discerning spirit, as well as his unique skills & ingenuity in identifying gold whenever he sees one and his resolve to always thrust them into the limelight, so that they could blossom & flourish, an uncommon trait lacking in many African leaders & black race across the globe.
The center-piece of this write-up is that, even though, Lagosians were skeptical of the capacity & capability of the new governor, as they unanimously opined that Lagos is too huge for him to manage, on account of his perceived inexperience, the fact staring everyone on the face now, is that Babajide Sanwo-Olu has not disappointed. He has displayed enormous mental strength, resilience, unrivaled capacity, incredible stamina and leadership ingenuity in managing & superintending overall emerging challenges in the state.
More importantly, he’s resolved to pay little or no attention to distractions, emanating from the camps of doubters & detractors,instead, opting to situating them in the realm of market noise. He’s been fantastically focused, preferring most times to remain glue to the substance.
Very unexpectedly, he’s been tremendously a team player, bringing everyone into the same boat and carrying everyone along, including his amiable, very resourceful and supportive deputy governor, loaded cabinet of commissioners & special advisers who are representatives of diverse political interests &political blocs across the state, the state APC EXCO, as well as all-important political class.
Of course, traditional rulers are not left behind in the entire governance, as they’ve been assigned their roles and responsibilities in the state, just as it was obtainable in Tinubu administration.
Even though, he has proved his mettles in different fronts confronting the state, particularly with references to the administration’s frontal attacks on environmental issues, transportation, roads infrastructures, as well as security architecture, his major test came with the emergence of COVID-19, an unusual pandemic that has in the last seven months, ravaged and brought the entire globe to her knees.
The governor marshalled & mobilized his troops in unusual and un-african style, proactively creating &instituting structures, building testing centers, quarantining the already affected souls, restricting human & vehicular movement, prescribing and dutifully enforcing protocols to preventing the widespread of the deadly virus, putting in place & steadying in red alert, medical personnel necessary, a comprehensive package that didn’t only attracted the accolades of President Buhari, but also ignited him to constitute the presidential task force(PTF) to handle the challenges at national front.
The proactive & positive attitudes of Lagos state government towards the pandemic also moved the spirit of the president to immediately ordered the grant of N10 Billion to support the state efforts.
It was later that other states started waking up to replicate various measures that Lagos state had put in place to confront the pandemic. We also need to salute the bravery and legendary performance of Professor Akin Abayomi in all these, as he’s been very professional, astute and responsive in all the situations.
It’s also important to note that, Lagosians especially the citizens of Ikorodu, Bariga, Shomolu, Mushin etc. where there have been security challenges before bow are now heaving a sigh of relief. Sanwo-Olu administration have comprehensively strengthened the state security architecture to reduce the heinous & nefarious activities of cultists & bandits to almost zero.
In fact, if the onslaught on the hoodlums is sustained, Lagos is bound to completely rid of cultism soonest. The performance of the state environmental team spearheaded by Hon Commissioner for Environment, Tunji Bello and Special Adviser to Governor on the Environment, Joe Igbokwe have also not gone un-noticed.
The ministry has been resolute in decision taken and enforcement, particularly in bringing down the disturbing properties, in the floodprone areas of Lekki, Ajah, Magodo, Ikorodu, Ikeja, Lagos Island. They’ve also been consistent in improving the general environmental situations of the state. It’s also worthy of note, that roads construction of appreciable & contemporary standard is on-going in all the nooks & crannies of the state. This is besides the incredible efforts of the state on the major roads across the state.
The governor is also commended for making spirited efforts at completing many gigantic projects inherited. In this class are over-head bridge at Pen Cinema, state government portion of Badagry Expressway long stretch road construction, dismantling of roundabout at Allen junction, as well as those at Ajah/Lekki expressway, overhead bridge at costain and many others. Governor Sanwo-Olu is assured forever, that his name will be written in gold if his administration could see off the construction of 4th mainland bridge before curtains is drawn on his tenure.
Before Oba Abdul Wasiu Gbolahan Lawal, the immediate commissioner for agriculture in the state ascended the throne of Oniru, he had made giant strides of revolutionizing agriculture in the state. Through his initiatives, Lagos acquired several hectares of land outside the state for the cultivation of grains, a deliberate strategy aimed at making foods sufficiently available for the teeming population of the state and possibly for exports.
Other ministries are working and making spirited efforts at positively impacting lives of the citizenry in the state in accordance with the APC manifestoes, as well as deliverable mandates assigned to them by the governor. Positive developments in the all facets in today’s Lagos is a picture of purposeful governance, being driven & piloted by a responsive & responsible, determined, shrewd and resourceful governor who is conscious of the fact that, there is no place for a non-performer in Tinubu’s political dynasty. It’s instructive to note that, Sanwo-Olu has been a worthy and credible ambassador of the dynasty. The same power bloc has produced Professor Yemi Osinbajo, Babatunde Fashola, Femi Gbajabiamila, Adeola Olamilekan, Rauf Aregbesola, Opeyemi Bamidele, James Faleke and vey many others, who have been marvelous to watch and shining like matador on the center stage.
It’s against this that this writer is passionately appealing to Asiwaju Tinubu and other APC leaders across the state-Alhajis Tajudeen Olusi, Busura Alebiosu, Musiliu Smith, Cardinal James Odunbaku and others, to immediately halt the senatorial ambition of Akin Ambode. Rumor is rife that, he’s poised to be given Lagos East Senatorial Districts slot. If this happens, it would be the political plunder of the decade and tragedy of immeasurable proportion, for Leopard will never change its spot. I make bold to submit that, Ambode won’t be a loyal & worthy ambassador of Yorubas & Lagos state at senate. It will be difficult for him to cultivating what’s naturally not in him. That’s the crux of the matter.
Kola AMZAT (FCA, FCIB)
LAGOS BASED FIN & MGT CONSULTANTS