Mayor Dele Osinowo, the Executive Chairman of Agboyi-Ketu Local Council Development Area (LCDA) in Lagos State, has set machineries in place to further shore up the Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) of the council prior to the council poll slated to hold on July 24, 2021.
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The council chief made this disclosure in a chat with selected newsmen at the LCDA’s secretariat recently.
Osinowo noted that resourceful and ingenious thinkers are required across all localities within the state to turn things around for good, as afforded in other climes.
To him there are so many potential sources of revenue clearly neglected by many.
The vibrant and energetic Osinowo hinted that the council had realized over N150 million yield from investment in real estate sector,noting that it is a result of critical consideration of their area of comparative advantage (Land), that made them venture in the provision of housing units to bolster the council’s finances and as well benefit the residents.
According to him, paucity of funds has brought the council behind in terms of infrastructural development over the years, but through their ingenuity, about 150 blocks of buildings had been built to yield revenue for the council.
He said that the project, which was initiated by his predecessor, Chief Yetunde Arobieke in 2010, was taken up by his administration to push the council forward and bring succour to the people.
“We have looked at our comparative advantage, which is land and decided to utilise it. I am doing away with building markets and shopping malls that characterises local government system.
“We decided to go into housing with the creation of a Property and Investment Board managed by a seasoned administrator. We have generated a lot of money from that, it is over N150 million and we will still generate more.
“Now, we are having about 150 blocks of buildings that can house over 2500 families. The occupants will patronise our markets, engage artisans and contribute to the development of our area,” Oshinowo, who is seeking re-election, said.
The council boss said that the LCDA appeared to be the first council investing in housing projects in the country and would do more business to better the lives and livelihood of the people at the grassroots.
He said that the council had also applied for 30 hectares of land to engage in agriculture and increase the Internally Generate Revenue (IGR).
According to him, his government is free from debts in carying out all the projects within his first tenure but being prudent managing resources at its disposal for the good of the mass majority of people.
Oshinowo, who noted that residents were in support of his second term in office, said he could walked across streets freely without body guards or escorts because a lot of people admires his leadership.
He added that the council had been able to empower about 400 people in two years through trainings in various skills under the Agboyi-Ketu Empowerment Scheme for a minimum period of six months and maximum of two years.
According to him, efforts have been made to move away from the traditional form of empowerments to trainings, hiring of shops with start up capitals and equipment for the trainees.
Oshinowo said that since the council remained behind in development, efforts had been made to also partner with public-spirited individuals, corporate organisations and multi-national companies.
“Things are not business as usual in Agboyi-Ketu, we are trying to change everything. There is a sharp difference, Agboyi-Ketu has actually changed and we are also bringing some multi-national companies in to adopt projects in the council,” he said.
Oshinowo said that his determination was to bring in more investors to create employments and improve quality of lives, especially of the youths and the downtrodden.
On ways to improve local government governance in the country, Oshinowo called for devolution of more powers to the local government if the nation wants real development at the grassroots.
The council boss said that much had been done to improve education, roads, security and control incessant flooding in the area.
He also noted that regarding the ecological peculiarities of the area, that processes are in top gear to access some funds afforded by federal arrangements running close to hundreds of billions courtesy Senator Tokunbo Abiru’s prompt intervention to issues.