Governor Babatunde Fashola
The Lagos State Government Tuesday unfolded plans to extend the Eko Atlantic City Project from the Bar Beach in Victoria Island to Alpha Beach in Lekki, as a way of permanently protecting lives and property along the state’s section of the Atlantic Ocean.
It also lamented the refusal of the Federal Government to fulfil its promise to address ocean erosion, which it said, affected strategic parts of the state before it took the initiative to build the Eko Atlantic City as a permanent solution to the ecological challenge.
The state Governor, Mr. Babatunde Fashola (SAN), explained the state’s response to ecological challenges during an inspection of some strategic projects in Lekki and Victoria Island yesterday, noting that the Federal Government had not given assistance to the state government in tackling the challenge.
Fashola, accompanied by the state’s Commissioner for the Environment, Mr. Tunji Bello and his Works and Infrastructure counterpart, Dr. Obafemi Hamzat, among others, inspected the International Arbitration Centre in Lekki, Maternal and Childcare Centre in Ajah, Lekki-Ikoyi Link Bridge, Ozumba Mbadiwe Road project, Fairmont Garden Mixed Development and Dolphin jetty project.
During the inspection, the governor expressed the resolve of the state government “to protect lives and property along the shore. It is a major ecological challenge for the state. We are going to build and protect for another 7.3 kilometres and that would get to Alpha Beach.
“Last August, we had a big storm when the Atlantic ran into the Kuramo and threatened all the property in that axis. You will recall that we had to abandoned few projects that we intended to do on that axis and re-ordered our budget so that we could respond to the emergency to safe lives in some of the estates located on the axis.
“We are constructing infrastructure that will limit the ability of the sea to continue to affect the shoreline there and what we have seen in about six months work is very encouraging. We have saved property that would have been submerged.
“If we have not acted, the story would have been different. Perhaps, it is one of the significant projects that our budget implementation achieved last year. There is still a distance to go. That project will last three years. So we have only awarded the first phase.”
The governor lamented that in spite of the threat of ocean surge to lives and property along the Atlantic Ocean, the state government “has not received any help from anyone. But we continued because this is the right way to spend tax payers’ money.”
He, however, explained that the state government “is currently executing about 1,966 projects across the state ” and only about 300 of the projects had been inspected so far.