Democratic Peoples’ Alliance (DPA) in Lagos has called on Governor Raji Fashola to relinquish the portfolio of the and appoint a substantive Commissioner.
The party, in a Press Statement signed by its Director of Publicity, Felix Oboagwina, said the Governor’s performance on the seat these two years showed the Ministry needed the efficiency and devotion of a full-time administrator.
According to Lagos DPA, “Perhaps, other than the Victoria Island-Lekki and Bourdillon Ikoyi roads, virtually all other roads have been in such terrible shapes that many have been washed away this wet season. Dug drainage ditches have become death traps because vehicles keep falling in, with attendant loss of lives, limbs and property.”
DPA said the state of Lagos roads had become very depressing, especially with the onset of the rains that had magnified the potholes and washed away asphalts and top soils.
Submitting that the Governor’s monopoly of the portfolio showed the government’s failure to appreciate the seriousness of the infrastructural needs of Lagos , DPA suggested: “He should simply unbundle the Ministry from Government House and appoint an engineer or someone with the requisite credentials to handle this fundamental sector. Lagos abounds with qualified civil engineers who can efficiently run that Ministry.
His Excellency would be doing his regime and Lagos one mighty favour should he appoint a more relevant peg to fill this Ministry. Some governments realising the demanding nature of the Works Ministry made it a stand-alone entity instead of the old practice of marrying the Ministry of Works and Housing together.”
The party further complained that even BRT lanes were nothing to write home about as buses in the scheme often abandoned their dedicated lanes to rub shoulders with vehicles on regular roads thus complicating the traffic situation on the highway.
In the words of the party, “The burden of running the affairs of the entire gamut of state business deprives the Governor time to adequately fulfill the demands of this strategically crucial Ministry. If he must run a Ministry, he should settle for a less demanding and less conspicuous one that has little interface with the day to day life of the people.”
According to the DPA statement, “Fashola appears unaware of the grave responsibility that the Ministry demands. With the massive size and population of Lagos , the Governor has his plate full with the business of governing a metropolitan state. The Ministry of Works needs an intimate, hands-on, day-to-day and issue-by-issue attention. Fashola has no business handling that Ministry. He is a lawyer and lacks the basic requisite skills for such a specialised portfolio.”
Apart from citing the yawning potholes on the roads, the party said areas begging for attention by the Ministry include: Alternative routes into Ikorodu, Epe, Ajah, Lekki and Ikotun, partner outlets and subsidiary arteries to connect Ikotun-Isolo axis with , Ajao Estate cum Airport Road , Isheri, Badagry and others.