Governor Akinwunmi Ambode of Lagos state, apart from his main task of overseeing the affairs of the state, may have also become a teacher, at least to his colleague from Kano state, Abdullahi Umar Ganduje.
Ganduje, who spoke at the governor’s office in Alausa, Ikeja area of Lagos state, said he was in the state to learn from his counterpart especially in the area of fighting crime and improving infrastructural development for which Ambode has reportedly excelled.
Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje of Kano state
“This meeting is a meeting between two mega cities in Nigeria.
“So, we have come to share our problems, we are mega cities and everybody is aware that there are some specific problems that mega cities have to confront; problems of security, crime.
“I was one time invited to attend when some equipment you recently donated to the police through the trust fund (were being handed over). I couldn’t come, but I saw everything that happened and I became jealous and that is why I am here so that I can learn from you.”
He said Kano state, being the commercial nerve-centre of northern Nigeria, is leading from the front to revive the agricultural sector especially in the areas of livestock farming, just as he added that the state is one of the largest producers of hides and skin used in making leather.
“The people who are waiting to consume these items are on this side of the country.
“Also in livestock, with the present problem of herdsmen, Kano state is providing grazing areas in order to improve their socio economic well-being. These are areas that we can come together to cooperate,” Governor Ganduje said.
He revealed that his administration was working hard to bring back the Kano pyramid, assuring that Lagos provides a ready market for agro products as it is the largest consumer of agricultural products in Nigeria.
Ambode, on his part, said that his state and Kano must begin to explore their comparative advantage, especially in the area of agriculture, to move the vision of transforming Nigeria’s economic fortunes for the better.
The governor, while noting that no state can survive on its own, added that leaders must therefore seek to discover possible areas of partnership that would not only enhance the economy but create jobs for the people.
“What is most important right now is how do we take on our comparative advantage to the betterment of our people?
“We must start to think about the reintegration of most of the economic activities and advantages that each state has.
“We can create factories here and use products from Kano to sell to the rest of the continent. Kano also stands more like an export zone for most of the West African countries around the zone.
“So it’s a win-win situation for both states, there is nothing else but for us to just show exemplary leadership that other states can start to think of how we can energize together and carry the vision of Nigeria forward,” Ambode said.
Governor Akinwunmi Ambode of Lagos state
He also said that Lagos and Kano share many similarities considering their mega city status, thus, both cities stand to benefit from each other to tackle the challenges confronting them and enhance their economic productivity.
“If Lagos was to claim that she knows everything, then Lagos wouldn’t be where it is now. So we would also want to share and learn from you. We know there are common issues like environmental sanitation, security, education and then more importantly about how we can take comparative advantage in the area of agriculture.
“We pride ourselves as the largest consumer of agro products in the country. We intend also to reactivate some of our furniture factory and also be able to do locally made furniture, all we need to do is to get the expertise to turn the hides and skin to become the best leather of the world and that would create employment for the people of Kano and Lagos alike,” Governor Ambode said.
The Lagos state commissioner for agriculture, Toyin Suarau had on Tuesday, May 3, reiterated the resolve of the state government to increase the aggregate food supply of the state from less than 15 per cent to 25 per cent within the next four years through various projects and programmes.
Suarau who said this at the ongoing ministerial press briefing to commemorate the first year in office of the Governor Akinwunmi Ambode led administration in Lagos, noted that the aggregate food supply internally is less than 15 per cent of total food consumption but added that the state is poised to increase this to 25 per cent within the next four years