By Ajibola Abayomi,
December 13, 2017
The Federal Government has completed the process of handing over the State House in Marina, Lagos, to the Lagos State Government.
The process was was completed on Tuesday with the signing and exchanging of documents between the Lagos state government and the Federal Government in Abuja.
The Lagos State Governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode, signed for the state government while the Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola, signed on behalf of the Federal Government.
Ambode was accompanied to the brief ceremony by the Secretary to the State Government, Tunji Bello; and the Commissioner for Information, Steve Ayorinde, among other government officials.
Speaking before signing the documents, Ambode disclosed that the state’s intention is to turn the property to a tourist centre that will help improve the economy of the state.
“We thank the President that approved that the presidential lodge be released to Lagos State. We have been trying for 20 years,” he said.
“I am pleased that on a day like this, it is my predecessor and the current minister that is now doing the final hand over. He has also been part of efforts to get the property back to Lagos. It is by God’s doing that he is positioned today to do the final handover.
“We see this as a sign of greater things and greater collaboration between the Federal Government and the state. It will improve the economy of the state because our intention is to turn that property to a national monument that we will christen a National Heritage Centre for Leadership.
“We will also use it as a tourist centre to attract Nigerian and foreign tourists and use it as a means of improving the economy of the state.”
Fashola, on his part, said: “We are here to sign and exchange documents which formally vest the Presidential Lodge in Marina in the Lagos State Government in fulfillment of the commitment and promise yet by President Buhari.
“This is a long journey that has come to an end. It is a journey that has taken almost two decades when the state government continued to ask that this property be vested in it. For reasons difficult to understand, it did not happen.
“But a President of change, a promise keeper, has made it happen. So while the state government has already taken possession as handed over by the Presidency, we are here to formally sign and exchange documents that will give the state government right to the property.”