By Olasunkanmi Akoni and Monsuru Olowoopejo
National Leader of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Bola Tinubu and Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola, yesterday, told Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State and his cabinet members not to resolve to prayers alone but embrace hard-work.
They added that Lagos State’s economy was very crucial to the country, saying, “if Lagos does not get it right, the country’s economy would also have challenges.”
They spoke at the ongoing 4-day retreat organized for cabinet members and permanent secretaries of the State Government with the theme: “Delivering the Lagos of Our Dreams.”
Tinubu, who made a surprise visit to the event, also told the 35 Commissioners and Special Advisers to count themselves among other qualified Lagosians and should serve the state and Nigeria as a whole.
“My experience can only be shared with you as time progress. You are a team of selected few to serve the people of Nigeria and Lagos. This is an important state and the heartbeat of Nigeria. Anything that goes wrong here is cancer to Nigeria. To serve Lagos is a great honour and opportunity for you. It shows you have been deemed to be one of the able professionals in your field with great character.
“However, talent can only give you the opportunity and recognition away from your peers but it cannot pave the way for the well being of the society. Talent without character is zero. There are so many unrewarded talents across the world. Your appointment gives you a huge opportunity unavailable to the rest of the people. Always place in your mind that honour and opportunity come with great responsibility.”
Tinubu, however, urged residents to have confidence in the Sanwo-Olu administration, saying, it has started on a right footing.
“It is two ways to it. Residents of Lagos must have confidence in the government that is in place for them. The residents have seen the government as prepared to do a marathon commitment in development for them.
“There are some developments that cannot be seen physically. They are not just the bricks and mortars but there are so many of it. If the smart city emerges, you have more investments, prosperity and revenues”.
Fashola, who also made a surprise visit to the venue, advised the new appointees to work more, read a lot rather than resulting to prayers in the discharge of their duties.
“You have to read a lot. You can’t do this business without reading. I welcome you to live of service to your nation and state. Forget prayers, it’s what you do that matters. You have signed up for a difficult job but it’s a noble undertaking to serve your people. You have to prove you deserve to be here. Some of you have been in politics, some are technocrats. You came here on a political platform so you all have become politicians, “Fashola said.
He continued: “You must develop a working relationship with political structure in your wards and state. Do not leave the area from where they picked you. You are the ears and eyes of the governor from where you are picked.”