Lagos State Governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode has advocated the need for a change of paradigm in the approach to governance particularly in the face of the dwindling resources and increasing need for social amenities and provision of infrastructure for sustainable economic growth.
Ambode, who stated this in Lagos today at the opening of the 2nd Summit of the Association of Lagos State retired Heads of Service and Permanent Secretaries (ALARHOSPS), stressed that in order to sustain the tradition of excellence in Lagos State, there is the need to evolve new ways of thinking and application of new strategies to solve new and evolving challenges.
The Governor, represented by his Deputy, Dr. (Mrs.) Idiat Oluranti Adebule, noted that all the reforms that his administration have initiated as well as the renewed focus on the largely untapped potentials are efforts that are geared towards making Lagos work for all.
“All the reforms that we have initiated since this administration was inaugurated over a year ago; the renewed focus on the largely untapped potentials including tourism as well as the strategic partnership with other state governments and the private sector are part of the efforts geared towards making Lagos work for all. They are also consistent with our overall policy objectives anchored on a tripod of security, infrastructural development and job creation,” the Governor opined.
He noted that Lagos State has all what it takes to be a major player not only on the African continent but also in the global economy, adding that all that is needed to be done, and which he noted the State is doing, is to optimise the huge potentials available to create more wealth and opportunities for the people.
Ambode pointed out that the challenges of governance, which is basically about bringing about improvement in the welfare of the people is dynamic, noting that the challenges that faced Lagos State today are different from those of decades ago.
He said, “Today, Lagos with a population of over 21million people is the third largest mega city in the world. While this, no doubt, in itself presents economic opportunities in terms of market potentials, it also comes with peculiar challenges that transcend all sectors of the State economy.”
The Governor lauded the efforts and contributions of the former Heads of Service and Permanent Secretaries for laying a solid foundation for the attainment of the various achievements recorded by successive administrations in the State, adding that they have also continued to ensure that the high standards are upheld and even taken to higher levels.
Earlier, the Head of Service, Mrs. Olabowale Ademola recalled that the Forum was inaugurated by the State Governor last year with a view to envisioning with the State Government the best ways and means of enhancing the quality of service delivery, improving public service structures and the quality of lives of the people and their environment for the benefit of all.
She emphasized that the concept of having a Forum of retired senior technocrats was informed by government’s conviction that the diverse experiences of members of such a Forum, all of whom had held senior public service positions before, would enrich the process of governance in itself, policy formulation/development, the public service and service delivery.
The Head of Service urged the members to focus on how it can help government to monitor and report on public opinions about government’s policies; monitor and evaluate community/local government developmental projects; advise government on quick wins such as medium/long term solutions to observed problems and challenges in our communities; and engage members of the grassroots in civic education and enlightenment among others.
“I have no doubt whatsoever that the Forum is indeed capable of achieving the purpose for which it was set up, particularly since the contributions and accomplishments of members of the Forum have helped to position Lagos State Public Service as the best in Africa,” Mrs. Ademola averred.