*Group endorses Labour Party candidate for Lagos governor
Amby Uneze in Owerri
The governorship candidate of Labour Party in Lagos State, Gbadebo Rhodes-Vivour has promised to increase salary of civil servants in the state by 100 per cent to N60,000 monthly in his first 100 days in office.
Speaking during an interactive session with journalists in Lagos at the weekend, Rhodes-Vivour said the target was to ensure that minimum in Lagos got to N100,000 as soon as possible.
“This will cover everybody including street sweepers,” he said.
He appealed to Lagos residents to come out on en mass on Saturday to vote for his party in the gubernatorial election this Saturday, as he highlighted his vision for a new Lagos.
He pointed out that under his administration, he would employ moral suasion to persuade the organised private sector follow government’s lead by stopping casualisation and also increase their minimum wage to a living wage.
“Banks, telcos, oil companies, multinationals, large national corporates, etc will be incentivised with PAYE tax credits to stop casualisation and index their minimum wage to their capacity to pay rather than current market wage rates which are suppressed by high unemployment. A first step for a Lagos where every worker has health care, pensions and similar benefits,” he said.
He also vowed to “cancel Alpha Beta’s Contract which costs the state N5 billion monthly,” and use the savings from the cancellation of Alpha Beta contract to set up a grand Loan Scheme for Micro, Small and Medium Scale Enterprises. He promised to ensure at least 10,000 beneficiaries in the scheme in his first 100 days in office.
“We expect the scheme to benefit up to one million beneficiaries in four years,” he added.
Furthermore, the Labour Party guber candidate pledged to establish a portal for publishing costs of all government projects and compare them to World Bank standards to eliminate waste and corruption and also issue a 10-year order for 10,000 vehicles to an auto manufacturer that commits to building an auto assembly in Lagos, with a credible plan to achieve 50 per cent value added within five years.
His plans also include taking away burden of taxation from residents by pulling down all toll gates in the Lekki Ajah axis and Ikoyi link bridge and “build a monument in memory of our slain sons and daughters at the old Lekki Toll Gate.”
“We shall advertise for the employment of 10,000 teachers with outstanding grades (First Class and Second Upper or Upper Credit) to start a process of repositioning teaching as a middle-class career.
“Execute a Memorandum of Understanding with all Road Transport Unions for the implementation of a rehabilitation and retraining program, and take Agberos off our roads. Invite bids for the design and construction of 100 km of rail across Lagos.
“Host an education summit with all stakeholders to get buy-in into GRV’s plan for partnerships to upscale public schools to the standards of the best private school by “Making School Fun’…a plan to digitalise all schools with free tablets, computers, internet and free education from primary to secondary school.
“Host a health summit with all stakeholders to get buy-in for partnerships to upscale services at Primary Health Centres to best-in-class, laying the foundation for an effective referral system.
“A summit for various artisan associations such as bricklayers, plumbers, mechanics, welders, carpenters, tailors and other technicians with the objective of creating a process for their certification and access to small-scale loans.
“Working with my party, the Labour Party, we shall appoint first-class caretaker Chairmen for each Local Govt, each appointee being skilled enough to be a potential governor,” he added.
Meanwhile, a pan-Igbo socio-cultural and political organisation, Obigbo has endorsed Rhodes-Vivour in the rescheduled March 18, 2023 governorship election in the State.
Just as the Afenifere last week endorsed the candidature of Rhodes-Vivour, the Obigbo comprising the Igbo, progressive Yoruba and other ethnic nationalities enjoined her members to vote massively for the governorship candidate of Labour Party and all other candidates of the party for the Lagos State House of Assembly.
In a statement signed by the National Publicity Secretary of the organisation, Gideon Oji Agwu, he advised Lagosians to vote massively for the Labour Party in the March 18 rescheduled Governorship and House of Assembly elections.
According to the group, Lagos State remains a heterogeneous society and center of excellence for all Nigerians, but regretted that it was quickly becoming a political fiefdom of a few self-acclaimed leaders who felt that without them, Lagos State would not work.
The group alleged that the deep rooted corruption, high taxation, intimidation and anti-people policies have so impoverished Lagos residents that “it is time to vote out those people and their surrogates.”
The body also alleged out that the APC-led government in Lagos State had earmarked three major markets for demolition by September, if re-elected.
“We are, therefore, calling on the electorate, especially the Igbo nation, to be vigilant and stand against such plans to massively rig the forthcoming elections, and to vote them out and break the chains of political and economic slavery, and return Lagos to her place of pride and unity as envisioned by Macaulay, Azikiwe, Awolowo and other founding Fathers,”
“Rhodes-Vivour is a detribalise Nigerian and a scion of the illustrious Rhodes-Vivour family of Lagos whose family ancestry and pivotal contribution to the affairs of Lagos dates back to five generations and would restore the cherished values of Lagos encapsulated in the promoting goodwill, dignity and nobility of spirit,” Agwu said.
The organisation while advising the incumbent to forget about his dream of being re-elected, as governance was, “not about leaking ice cream in Shopping Malls,” also admonished her members from all the market unions to adhere strictly to the scheduled meetings and at the stipulated time for obvious reasons.