A former Deputy National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Chief Olabode George on Wednesday challenged the incoming governor of Lagos state, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, to take up the modernization of Lagos Island when he assumes office.
George who is the Atona Oodua of Yorubaland spoke during a visit to the victims of the recent building collapse at Ita-Faaji area of Lagos state at the Lagos Island General Hospital.
The PDP leader also tasked the minister of Works, Power and Housing, Babatunde Fashola, for allowing the displaced people of Ita-Faaji occupy his empty mansion on the same street.
Chief Bode George visited the General Hospital wards where some of the victims who were mostly pupils were receiving treatment.
He empathized with them and commiserated with those who lost their wards or relatives.
Speaking with newsmen after the visit, he blamed the development on incompetence and criminal negligence by those charged with the responsibility to approve and disapprove the building.
He said in a saner clime, those responsible for the “criminal negligence” would be prosecuted.
George described as eyesore the chaotic condition of the Lagos Island where he also grew up, charging the Governor-elect whom he said also lived on the Island to modernize the area.
He said, “Sanwo-Olu too has his family house on Omidundun Street. The out-going governor, Akinwunmi Ambode, if you go to Epe, the place is no longer the sleeping village. He has modernized it. Fashola headed to Surulere, it is no longer the old Surulere.
“I am throwing a challenge on the face of Sanwo-Olu to also modernize Lagos Island. The first Local Government in Nigeria was City Hall. I hope he would have the nerve, the gut, the drive.
“This would be a pointer to whatever legacy he would leave and we would hold him fully responsible for it. I wish our state well. And I think our people are already getting to a point where they know there must be a change”.
He however called on Fashola to show compassion by allowing the displaced victims of the collapsed building stay in one of his empty mansions in the area pending the time they would get alternative accommodations.
He said, “In the meantime when I went recently for the election, I saw what Fashola has built in the area. Now, in the interest of the humanity, because his father is also from that area.
“He has built a lot of houses empty in the past five or six years. Let him show some modicum of humanity and let some of these people stay there until they can get alternative accommodation and they won’t forget him…That’s what is called a sense of belonging; I wish I have houses there.”