AMBODE’S RECORD BREAKING 2018 BUDGET BUOYS PROPERTY INVESTORS!
Governor Akinwunmi Ambode of Lagos State recently presented the state’s 2018 Budget proposal of N1.046 trillion to the House of Assembly, with a pledge that his administration will make every effort to complete all ongoing projects as well as initiate new ones to consolidate on the development recorded in the last 30 months. For property investors in the state, the details of the budget as presented by the governor to the house of assembly shows that better days lie ahead for real estate investors in the state.
It will be recalled that Governor Ambode, had christened the 2018 Budget “Budget of Progress and Development”, said it would be used to consolidate on the achievements recorded in infrastructure, education, transportation/traffic management, security and health sectors. The Lagos governor’s budget proposal is the highest ever in the state’s history, and the second-highest in the country after Governor Ben Ayade’s proposed N1.3 trillion for 2018 in Cross River State.
Outlining the key components of the budget, Governor Ambode said capital expenditure would gulp N699.082 billion while N347.039 billion would be dedicated to recurrent expenditure, representing a Capital/Recurrent ratio of 67 percent to 33 percent and a 28.67 percent increase over Y2017 budget. The governor said despite the modest achievements recorded in 2017, there was still much work ahead, assuring that government would not relent in its efforts to give Lagosians the best by way of continuous and efficient service delivery.
“Lagos has always been a trailblazer and we must consolidate on the economic gains made so far by initiating people-friendly programmes and projects that will attract more economic improvement in Y2018. “It is our resolve in Y2018 to strive and complete all on-going projects in order to meet their specified completion period and embark on new strategic projects. We intend to improve on our Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) in the face of the dwindling accruable revenue allocation from the Federal Government, sustain our vision on wealth creation and poverty alleviation,” Governor Ambode said.
The governor also listed key projects captured in the 2018 Budget to include the Agege Pen Cinema flyover; alternative routes through Oke-Ira in Eti-Osa to Epe-Lekki Expressway; the 8km regional road to serve as alternative route to connect Victoria Garden City (VGC) with Freedom Road in Lekki Phase I; completion of the on-going reconstruction of Oshodi International Airport Road into a 10-lane road and the BRT Lane from Oshodi to Abule-Egba.
On infrastructural renewal, Mr. Ambode said his administration remains committed to sustaining the tempo of continuous construction, rehabilitation, upgrading and maintenance of network of roads across the State including those within the boundary areas of Lagos and Ogun States and that the bus reform initiative would be consolidated with the introduction of high and medium capacity buses, construction and completion of bus depots at Oshodi, Anthony, Yaba and many others.
Governor Ambode also assured that his administration will vigorously pursue its planned direct intervention in the power value chain towards generating 3,000MW Embedded Power Programme within a three-year plan to achieving 24/7 power supply for the State, stressing that the challenge of inadequate power supply must be resolved for the economy to perform optimally.
He listed some of the projects to include completion of the five new Art Theatres; establish a Heritage Centre at the former Federal Presidential State House recently handed over to the State Government; build a world class museum between the former Presidential Lodge and the State House, Marina; fast-track construction of the proposed four new stadia in Igbogbo, Epe, Badagry and Ajeromi Ifelodun (Ajegunle) and complete the on-going Epe and Badagry Marina projects.
On Housing, Governor Ambode said that all on-going projects especially those at Gbagada, Igbogbo, Iponri, Igando, Omole Phase I, Sangotedo and Ajara-Badagry would be completed for delivery under the Rent-to-Own policy.
Receiving the budget, Speaker of the House, Mudashiru Obasa, commended Governor Ambode for faithfully executing the year 2017 budget, saying the positive impact of such had been felt across the State with various projects such as the Abule Egba, Ajah and Pen Cinema Flyovers, among other numerous projects in various sectors.
Property investors who had followed the budget presentation closely said they were happy that the budget was focused mainly on continuing the infrastructure upgrade drive of this present Lagos State Government. Alhaji Bashiru Bawala the MD/CE of Bambawa Homes and Properties Limited says property investors all over the state are happy with the budget presentation as the details have shown that major infrastructure works are to continue in almost all parts of Lagos. “We property investors in the long run will be the major beneficiaries”, he says.
Another real estate developer, Chief Osas Aimokode of Santurn Real Estate Investment Company says the focus of Governor Ambode on infrastructure in the state is one that will endure for generations to come. “These are tangible things the governor is putting the state money into. Apart from the government of Alhaji Lateef Jakande, I am not sure any other governor has done this much in terms of infrastructure is such a short time. The governor is magician and we property investors are happy with and that is why we encourage our members at the level of the Real Estate Developers Association of Nigeria to look for ways of partnering the Governor”, he says.