By Olasunkanmi Akoni
Lagos—Governor Akinwunmi Ambode of Lagos State has commended President Muhammadu Buhari for approving the hand-over of the Presidential Lodge in Marina to the Lagos State Government.
The President’s gesture followed a request by Governor Ambode to have the Presidential lodge released to the Lagos State Government in its bid to transform the Marina-Onikan axis into a world-class arts and tourism hub.
The President’s approval was communicated in a letter signed by his Chief of Staff, Mallam Abba Kyari, to Governor Ambode.
In a statement yesterday, the Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr. Steve Ayorinde, said that Governor Ambode expressed heartfelt gratitude to the President for his kind gesture, magnanimity and “keen admiration for Lagos State as the Centre of Excellence that is well suited to becoming Africa’s foremost hub for arts, entertainment and tourism.”
The statement said that, with the presidential approval, Ambode has consequently unveiled plans to turn the erstwhile lodge to The Heritage Centre for Leadership, which would be redesigned and equipped as a landmark research and tourist arena that will be open to local and international visitors.
“On behalf of the government and people of Lagos State, I wish to express our heartfelt gratitude to President Muhammadu Buhari for his kind hand-over of the Presidential Lodge in Marina to the Lagos State government. This, in my opinion, demonstrates the President’s special interest in Lagos State, which is in line with the promise he made.”