-Rep. Benson charges that SUKUK bond be used for immediate intervention
The Lagos State and Federal Governments have agreed to collaborate on the rehabilitation of the collapsed road networks at the Odogunyan Industrial Estate, which is the largest in West Africa.
The road network, which has been in terrible state for many years, caught the attention of the Vice President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, Governor of Lagos State, Mr Babajide Sanwo – Olu, several members of the Federal Executive Council and other dignitaries when they came to the axis to commission the Kimber – Clark Manufacturing Plant on Friday, February 25, 2022.
Prince Clement Egba, Minister of State for Finance, Budget and National Planning, in his remarksat the event, called the attention of the government to the decadence state of the infrastructures in the industrial estate which he said does not conform with the investments.
While assuring of the federal government’s commitment to the rehabilitation of the road and upscaling the infrastructures in the industrial estate, the Honourable Minister also charged Lagos Governor to do the same in ensuring that the area is given a facelift.
“Both the state and the federal governments benefit from this (the Industrial Estate). While the State government benefits from the Personal Income Taxes, at the federal level, we also benefit from the Company Income Taxes and I must also say that the infrastructures in this area have not grown in the same pace as the industries that are in this area”, Prince Egba said.
“I had a chat a while ago with His Excellency, the governor of Lagos State, as to what is the cost to construct a road and he mentioned N2.5billion.
“Mr Governor, since we both benefit from the area, if you commit to provide N1billion, I will commit the federal government to providing N1.5billion in the next budget, so that together, we can do it”, he charged.
Governor Sanwo – Olu, in his reaction to the charge by the Minister, took up the challenge by stating that his government will ensure that its share of 1Billion naira is provided for the rehabilitation of the roads.
“As the Minister of State for Planning has said and also has Hon. Babajimi Benson has said, I also think that it is important that all of us are here today cannot leave this road undone and so, I take the challenge as the Minister has said and we will be working to have a very good road. We would not wait till next year”, Sanwo – Olu said.
“We are going to call our predecessor who also happens to be the Minister for Works and Housing and tell him that on his behalf, the Vice President and the Minister for Planning have made a pledge and we are going to readjust our budget and ensure that we invest our own 1billion very quickly”.
He said that it is the duty of the government to provide an enabling environment for business and its citizenry to operate in.
“This is a synergy that the private sector needs to know and believe that the government is true to its words. As a government, we will always be in support of its citizens”, he said.
“We cannot undermine an investment of 100million dollars by failing to do an investment of 10 to 15 million dollars that we, as the government, need to do to open up the corridor and ensure that other companies like Kimberly – Clark also come to Odogunyan.
“We would take up the challenge. We would fix this road. We would ensure that before the end of this year, we bring succor to the people in this place.
“That is the reason we are in government. We are not in government to give stories; we are not in government to give excuses. We are in government to resolve problems, to create an enabling environment where businesses like Kimberly – Clark can indeed do what they do very well which is investment”, Sanwo – Olu added.
“We are on a journey of ensuring compensation and ensuring that we can provide jobs, skill acquisition and needed investment for our teeming population, for our youths who are the leaders of today”.
The representative of the Ikorodu Federal Constituency, Rep. Babajimi Benson, while commending the FG and Lagos State for their partnership to improve the infrastructures within the Odogunyan Industrial Estate, he disagreed that the proposed reconstruction should be budgeted for in the next budget circle.
Rather, the lawmaker called on the Minister to consider accessing the SUKUK bond for the immediate rehabilitation of the industrial estate.
“I am also going to echo the words of my favourite person today, the Minister of Planning, Chief Clement Egba for requesting that the Federal Government of Nigeria budget N1.5billion and the performing governor of Lagos State whom we all called ‘Mr Sellable’, also putting a matching grant of 1 Billion naira to the cause of ensuring that the infrastructure in this area is built and upscale to a first – class”, Rep. Benson said.
“However, he has requested for the next budget circle which I believe is 2023. No, there are things that we can do. There is SUKUK which has been used in completing the Ikorodu – Shagamu road.
“I am sure that can be speedily tapped into now. The Vice President is here with his seal of office. The governor is also here with his seal of office. This can be done”, he charged.