A Lawmaker representing Epe Federal Constituency at the Federal House of Representatives, Hon. Wale Raji, has reacted to the highly contentious delineation bill which has generated heated disputations within Lagos state in recent days.
The Lagos Assembly Delineation Bill whose sponsor remains shrouded in anonymity, is a proposal to rejig the five administrative divisions in the state.
In a reactionary comment in a telephone interview with EKO HOT BlOG, Hon. Wale Raji said the bill would cause rancour among the indigenous of the state.
He noted that the bill threatens the foundation upon which Lagos State was created in 1967, which was IBILE.
Hon Raji, who observed that the bill runs contrary to the Administrative division establishment act of 1968, also said that the bill is unlikely add value to the existing administrative structure of the state, asking the Speaker to suspend further action as any attempt to alter the status quo will threaten the unity and cohesiveness of the state.
According to the charismatic lawmaker, who recently received plaudits for his remarkable education intervention projects in his constituency, there is a critical need for a more comprehensive consultation with the state stakeholders, the traditional rulers, elected officials both at the state and Federal Level, Captain of Industries, Students, and Youth representatives.
Hon. Raji also said that his misgivings regarding the merit of the proposed bill is borne out of a crucial need to allow the state government and it’s executive and legislative adjuncts to dedicate due emphasis and attention to more pressing matters like shoring up efforts geared towards proffering more definitive means of combatting the COVID-19 pandemic, whose nerve centre has been Lagos State since the pandemic reached it’s critical stage early last year.
As gathered by EKO HOT BLOG, the bill, since becoming public knowledge, has triggered widespread repudiation by stakeholders who consider the proposed readjustment an adulteration of the administrative fabric of the state.
Since its creation, Lagos state has been operating on five administrative divisions – Ikeja, Badagry, Ikorodu, Eko (Lagos Island) and Epe.
In the build-up to its consideration, the bill scaled through first and second reading on the same day, whipping suspicions that there was something untoward about its rush.
In the proposed bill, whose sponsorship remains unknown, 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.
Reacting, 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 vehemently rejected the bill.
There has also been strong dissenting voices from the Eti-Osa Heritage Group as well as the Ikorodu Division Stakeholders.
Chairman of new Ikorodu-Oga Development Association (IKODASS), Otunba Ganiyu Olusegun Abiru, observed that the passage of the bill for first and second reading in a single day points towards a dishonest motive by its sponsors.