The move by the Lagos State House of Assembly to delineate and readjust the five administrative divisions in the state is generating ripples across the state.
The Lagos Assembly Delineation Bill whose sponsor is yet to be revealed has triggered massive protests across the state leading to the suspension of its consideration, it was learnt.
- Dikko Inde, former Customs Comptroller-General, Is Dead
- Kagara student: Bandits killed our colleague in my presence
The public hearing slated for last Friday did not hold following the suspension.
Despite the suspension, stakeholders across the state said they would remain vigilant and oppose any attempt to push the bill through.
Daily Trust reports that the state has been operating on five administrative divisions – Ikeja, Badagry, Ikorodu, Eko (Lagos Island) and Epe.
Penultimate week, the bill scaled through first and second reading same day, fuelling speculations that there was something sinister causing the rush.
In the proposed bill, which sponsorship was still shrouded in secrecy, the house proposed to readjust the divisions as follows: Agege, Ikeja, Mushin, Ifako-Ijaiye, Oshodi as one division; Alimosho, Ojo, Amuwo-Odofin, Badagry and Ajeromi-Ifelodun (second division).
Others are Ikorodu, Shomolu, Kosofe and Ibeju-Lekki, Etiosa and Epe.
But notable traditional rulers and stakeholders from Eti-Osa LGA, such as Oniru of Iruland, Oba Abdul Wasiu Omogbolahan Lawal; Ojomu of Ajiranland, Oba Tijani Akinloye; former Lagos State Commissioner for Finance, Mr. Wale Edun; and others have kicked against the bill.
The leader of Eti-Osa Heritage Group, Mr. Adewale Sani, who spoke on behalf of the stakeholders, said they are opposed to the bill which seeks to take them from their ancestral home to Epe.
Also, the Ikorodu Division stakeholders have rejected the bill which they said could draw the area backwards.
Chairman of new Ikorodu-Oga Development Association (IKODASS), Otunba Ganiyu Olusegun Abiru, said the passage of the bill for first and second reading in a single day called to question the sincerity of its promoters.
Abiru, who is a former Clerk of the House said his experience in the legislature showed that it is rare to pass a bill for first and second reading in one sitting “except the matter is very important and crucial and of immediate importance to the state”.
“That is when you can pass the bill for first and second reading in one day. So it means there is a hidden agenda somewhere. These local governments they are merging, culturally and historically do not have any affinity,” he added.
When contacted, Chairman of the House of Assembly Committee on Information,
Setonji David, however, said there was no hidden agenda anywhere.
According to him, while the bill has been put on hold at the moment, the will of the people would still prevail.
“The process is very clear. We are going to hear from our people. We are not going to impose our own will. Every plan and policy of the government is directed at the betterment of the people,” he said.