Lagos State Governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode on Thursday justified the decision of his administration to engage indigenous contractors for the construction of 114 inner roads simultaneously across the State, just as he disclosed that about N1trillion is needed yearly to address the deficit in road construction.
Governor Ambode, who spoke in Oshodi-Isolo at the ongoing inauguration of 114 roads constructed across the 20 Local Government Areas (LGs) and 37 Local Council Development Areas (LCDAs), said indigenous contractors were engaged for the project not only to boost employment but also encourage the local construction industry to grow.
Speaking through the Commissioner for Works and Infrastructure, Engr. Ganiyu Johnson at the commissioning of Kalejaiye Street, the Governor assured residents that any mistake committed by the indigenous contractors in the course of the project would be addressed, adding that the construction of the inner roads was in response to the yearning of the people.
In a statement by his spokesperson, Mr Habib Haruna, the Governor said: “We have to encourage our indigenous contractors because whether we like it or not, that is the one of the ways to generate employment and when we engage them, there will be money in the circulation.
“We are challenging them to do their best and as government we don’t want to shy away from mistakes. If they (indigenous contractors) make mistakes, we also try to correct and encourage them. We are learning, it is a learning process and with time, I believe they will get there,” he said.
At the commissioning of Ogunyinka Street, also in Oshodi LG, Ambode who was represented by the Iyaloja General of Nigeria, Chief Mrs. Folashade Tinubu-Ojo also urged indigenous contractors to justify the confidence reposed in them.
Likewise at the handover of Hassan Odumeru street in Ikosi-Ejinrin LCDA, the Governor who was represented by a member of the House of Representatives, Hon Olawale Raji, said the use of indigenous contractors for the 114 roads was a direct and indirect way of creating jobs for Lagosians.
In Ayobo Ipaja LCDA, the Governor said with the inauguration of Ajelanwa Baruwa and Megida-Alaja roads, 56 villages have been opened up for an enhanced economic opportunities noting that many hopes had been brightened by the initiative.
Ambode who spoke through a member of the State House of Assembly, Mr. Bisi Yusuf, said more than 20,000 youths in the Lagos West Senatorial District would be offered job opportunities in the area of fishery by the State Government.