*Photo R-L: Kadiri, Ogene*
Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babajide Olusola Sanwo-Olu has called for the support of the Federal Government to enable the state to efficiently put in place necessary infrastructures.
The Deputy Governor, Dr. Kadri Obafemi Hamzat, on behalf of the Governor received the Federal House of Representatives, Ad Hoc Committee on Mass Transit Scheme, today at the Round House, Alausa, Ikeja.
Sanwo-Olu stated that the State needs the assistance of the federal government in funding infrastructure projects which will contribute to the huge size of the Country’s GDP, adding that “there will be no progress recorded in the country if the big cities are not taken care of”.
Speaking further on huge projects undertaken by the State Government, Sanwo-Olu noted that the Government had to take up the blue rail line due to the large population in the state. “Despite the state being the first to take up such as no other sub-sovereign anywhere in the world has built a Rail Line without the Federal Government’s inventions”, he said.
According to him, “It would be difficult to run a city like Lagos without mass transit, the government cannot have a city that is 0.4 per cent of the land mass of the country but hosts 11 per cent of the population, it is going to be chaotic and that is why we decided as a state government to bite the bullet and start running it”.
Sanwo-Olu also noted that the first phase of the 27km blue rail project has just been completed running from Marina to Okomimko, while the 14 km of the second phase has been awarded and will be commencing soon.
He also stated that the blue rail transports about 150,000 people daily, with an estimate of transporting between 480,000-500,000 people daily upon its completion. “At the commencement of the red line operation, one million Lagosians will be conveyed daily to their various destinations”, he assured. The Governor, however, noted that the execution of the blue line took a long time because of its financial implications.
On water transportation, he said the government has enormously increased the operation of its Lagferry operations, with the purchase of more ferries. “It has gotten to a stage where we now build these ferries in the state, currently, the state has built about fifteen ferries and of course, our private partners are also running”.
Earlier in his remarks, the Chairman of the Federal House of Representatives, Ad Hoc Committee on Mass Transit Scheme, Hon. Afam Victor Ogene stated that the committee is being saddled by the plenary to look into reasons for previous failed mass transits.
According to him, most of the infrastructure put up in Lagos is worthy of emulation by the component states across the country.