By Samuel Ogundipe
With emphasis on social engineering, a highly elated Senator Musiliu Obanikoro took to the National Stadium, Lagos to enunciate his plan for the people of Lagos on Tuesday, ahead of the gubernatorial primary that its outcome is looking increasingly unpredictable.
In a declaration speech themed: “Walk with Me,” Senator Obanikoro, who recently resigned his appointment as Minister of State for Defence, said his decision to resign a much-coveted position for an uncertain political endeavor is borne out of his unwavering passion for the welfare of the downtrodden in Lagos, whom he said have been largely slighted by the present All Progressives Congress government in the state.
“An average family in Lagos is suffering so much that it cannot afford to purchase basic needs. I am going to make sure that I put an end to this,” he said.
He also promised Lagosians a new way of life if voted into office using a subtle condemnation of Governor Fashola’s environmental restructuring programme.
“If elected, I will make sure that no Iya Alata wakes up in the morning to find his shops demolished,” he said.
He promised to work with the PDP-led federal government to craft the modalities aimed at achieving a special status for Lagos.
“Lagos belongs to all of us, we are going to put an end to an era where Lagos belongs to one man. Power comes from God. I am going to ensure that my wealth of experience, having served at all levels of government, will come to bare in May 2015 and I will ensure we have a constructive engagement with the Federal Government of Nigeria. I don’t know of any mega city in the world that has managed its affairs on its own without the involvement of other tiers of government,” he said.
If elected, Obanikoro said he would carry out an infrastructural renaissance in the Mainland suburbs of Lagos, settlements he said had been utterly ignored by the current administration.
“Obanikoro administration will create a Malaria Centre across the 20 local government areas of the state, we will ensure our schools stand shoulder with others. Quality roads will also be built at cheaper rates.”
In the speech, which lasted for about 12 minutes, Obanikoro fretted that the Fashola administration’s alleged policy of taking money from the poor to pay the rich is totally unacceptable.
“Any system that takes from the rich to pay the poor, like the current system we have in Lagos State, cannot be said to be a good system.”
He described the incumbent governor, Fashola, as a very humble man who meant well for Lagos, but said former Governor Bola Tinubu’s “undue influence is what accounts for Fashola’s failure as governor.”