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Ambode sworn-in, promises better life for Lagosians

Akinwumi and wife at the swearing-in ceremony.
Akinwumi and wife at the swearing-in ceremony.
Mr Akinwunmi Ambode, the new governor of Lagos State has promised to implement creative ideas that reduce the cost of running government and make life simpler for people in the state.
Ambode spoke in his inaugural address after being sworn in as the 14th governor of the state by the Chief Judge, Mrs Funmilayo Olajumoke- Atilade, at the Tafawa Balewa Square, Onikan, Lagos.
He said: ‘’Creativity is the most valuable asset in any public institution.
“Progressive governments must reward contributors of good ideas, therefore, wherever practicable, we shall practise government by incentives and not government by enforcement.
“We shall implement creative ideas and concepts that reduce the cost of running government; ideas that make life simpler and happier for our people.
“I, therefore, invite you all, to join hands with me, to offer new ideas that will pull more resources to cater for the poor and needy amongst us.
“This will be a compassionate government.”
Ambode promised to run an open government of inclusion that would not leave anyone behind, irrespective of age, sex, tribe or any other status.
“As we collectively face the challenge to make Lagos a better place to live in, we must recognise our strength in diversity, a common national identity where everybody counts.
“As long as you reside in Lagos, we will make Lagos work for you,” he said.
He enjoined all residents to embrace new thinking and be determined to succeed at all times.
“I am ready to encourage and nurture that dream in our children, youths and every hard-working Lagosian,” he said.
The governor said that merit, hard work and loyalty to the state would be rewarded.
“The future is for those who dare to dream and find courage to pursue their dreams,” he said.
Ambode urged residents to redouble their efforts on all fronts for commitment to excellence to sustain the progressive and radical transformation going on in the state.
He called on the people to be responsible tax payers while assuring them that his administration would ensure that their taxes worked for them.
“You will surely get a transparent and incorruptible government that will give you good value for your taxes paid.”
Ambode said that he was committed to the State Development Plan 2012-2015 structured under four pillars including social development and security, infrastructural development, economic development and sustainable environment.
“The challenges we face today as a state, are good enough ingredients to bring out the best of all of us.
“Together, we shall push forward and not look back, with our hands firmly on the plough; we would work hard to tackle poverty, ignorance and social decadence in our state,” he said.
The governor also assured the business community and corporate class that the ease of doing business in the state would be improved upon earnestly.
“Lagos is open for greater business; to this end, a new office of Overseas Affairs and Investment (LAGOS GLOBAL) shall be created under the governor’s office.
“We want you to fly into Lagos, start your business, find your way; live, work and enjoy in Lagos,” Ambode said.
He disclosed that as part of the reforms, a new Ministry of Wealth Creation and Employment would be established.
“This would specifically address the promise I made during the campaign on employment trust fund, labour exchange and entrepreneurship. This goal, we shall pursue vigorously.
“Also, the Office of Civic Engagement shall be created under the Deputy Governor’s office to strengthen and enhance our promise on government of inclusion.
“Everyone must have a voice in my administration,” Ambode said.
He commended his predecessors, Chief Bola Tinubu and the immediate past governor, Mr Babatunde Fashola (SAN), saying that they shaped the history of the state in the last 16 years.
In his valedictory speech, Fashola thanked all those who had given his administration the much-needed support.
He said the support of workers, cabinet members, residents and even members of his family helped him to give his best as governor.
While congratulating Ambode and Mrs Idiat Adebule on their inauguration as governor and deputy-governor respectively, Fashola called on residents to give them the right support to succeed.
“The people of Lagos, I urge you to stand firmly and resolutely behind our new governor.
“Let us pray for him, let us support him, and let us wish him well as begins this historic journey of delivering more development to the state,” he said.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the inauguration was graced by eminent personalities in the state including former Governors — retired Brig.-Gen. Mobolaji Johnson, Alhaji Lateef Jakande and retired Rear Adm. Ndubusi Kanu.
Former deputy-governors including Mrs Sarah Sosan, Mr Femi Pedro as well as the Oba Rilwan Akiolu of Lagos were also present.
Members of the diplomatic corps, different trade associations, students and market women were also at the venue in their numbers.

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