GOVERNOR Akinwunmi Ambode of Lagos State insists that the state deserves a special status, saying a Yes for the bill seeking such recognition would have provided an opportunity to reflate the economy.
Ambode’s position was contained in a statement signed by the Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr Steve Ayorinde, in Lagos.
According to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), the governor was reacting to the Senate’s rejection of a bill sponsored by Senator Oluremi Tinubu, representing Lagos Central Constituency, for the state to be recognised and rewarded with a special status and grant.
Ambode said: “In spite of the setback the bill suffered on Wednesday, the fact remains that Lagos State has always played a special role to Nigerians as individuals and to the country as a whole.
“Nigeria needs Lagos in order for other parts of the country to continue to benefit from it.
Ambode commended Tinubu for her thoughtfulness and courage in promoting the bill that sought a special recognition for the state.
The governor said that Lagos, in spite of the rejection of the bill, would continue to be special.
According to him, the state will not be deterred in continuing to play the important role of serving as a conducive and secure home for Lagosians as well as local and international visitors.
He said it would continue to be a home where opportunities are limitless and lives and property are safe.
Meanwhile, a socio-political group, the Lagos Future Group (LFG), on Thursday, called on senators at the National Assembly to put sectarian politics aside and treat the bill seeking special status for Lagos State with all the merits it deserves.
The group said this in a statement signed by its president, Mr Seyi Bamigbade, while reacting to the decision of the senate to drop the bill during their plenary session on Wednesday.
The LFG reiterated the strategic economic importance of Lagos to Nigeria, saying it was crucial for the Federal Government to support Lagos financially in order for the state to be able to provide the needed infrastructure, befitting of a world class mega-city.