Monday, October 20, 2014 7:56 am
Former Commissioner for Physical Planning and Urban Development under Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, Engr. Hakeem Akinola Gbajabiamila, has declared his readiness to wrest the Lagos Central Senatorial District’s seat from the wife of his former boss, Senator Oluremi Tinubu, come 2015 on the platform of Peoples Democratic Party.
His words,”in life, you must be ready for what you want to do. You can’t sit down here and just be asking for change. Tinubu did not get there because it was given to him. He got there through a process and therefore, somebody must unseat that process. I pray that my wish is blessed by God. I will go through the party primaries. I am ready for it and I have done it before. I believe that with all the efforts that I will put in, I will be successful and I don’t have any worry about that. I know that God will make it happen. I believe that when it comes to the election, the people’s voice will speak and when the people’s voice speaks, there is nothing that can change it.
“So it is not about who I am competing with or the resources of the person I am competing with. It is the ability to sell my product. It is the ability to win the election. That is the most important thing and with what we have on ground and what we are doing, we will win the heart of the people,” he boasts.
Speaking on his programmes for the people of Lagos Central, he said by his training and experience, he has realised that in the last 12 years, the quality of representation at the National Assembly has continue to dwindle, hence his decision to change things for the better.
“People go there because somebody believe it is their gift for being around rather than putting people who have purpose to be there. First and foremost, the people of Lagos need good representation that will take care of their interest, who will discuss their issues, who will talk about the environment of Lagos.
“Lagos is a very small landmass and it accommodates and houses 10 per cent of the population of Nigeria. It is only three per cent of Nigeria’s landmass with lots of water. Therefore, the issue of environment is very critical to it. Infrastructural development to support that number of people in a small environment is very important.
“Therefore, we must be able to bring about all the benefits that Lagos deserves back to Lagos. It is not only about oversight function because if you look also, of all the arms of government, you will see that it is the legislative arm that is the least developed. This is because over the years, each time the military came to power, they truncated the legislative aspect of government,” he averred.
He said lawmaking is a serious business, adding that it should be taken more seriously than it was taken in the past.
“We should have quality people representing us; quality people who understand the issues, the problem of our people. I understand a lot about Lagos.
“I have said that Lagos is highly densely populated and the land mass is waterlogged. In 2000, we did a study of the coastal region. There are a lot of environmental issues that we need to pay more attention to and the Federal Government too needs to be involved in that process. It is not that there is no solution to flooding issues but when environmental impact studies are not carried out on projects being done or people are not carried along on projects that are being done, we will continue to have serious environmental issues.
“Those are the kinds of things that I will like to address going into the Senate. I will ensure that proper laws to support these things are enacted. I will also like to see infrastructural development being brought to Lagos and also continue to push for special status for Lagos through the Lagos Metropolitan Development Authority which is a good vehicle to give the state its deserved status and give it the recognition that it deserves in the scheme of things. There is no Nigerian that doesn’t have relatives living in Lagos.
“We look at Apapa for example and we see that further representation of Lagos is needed at the centre to make sure that Apapa is dealt with accordingly by reducing the congestion there,” he said.