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April 19, 2024
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Sanwo-Olu questions FG control over Lagos waterways

The Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, has questioned the constitutional basis that vests the control of water bodies in Lagos State in the Federal Government.

Sanwo-Olu raised the question on Monday at a colloquium tagged ‘National dialogue on the future of Nigeria’, held in honour of the late legal luminary, Prof. Ben Nwabueze, at the Nigerian Institute of International Affairs, Lagos.

The gathering debated the suitability or workability of the 1999 Constitution for the country.

Sanwo-Olu, in his remarks, said,  “I stand here as the leader of the largest state. How well do we see the anomalies that we have in our country? Why would a federal agency come to control the water in front of Ozumba Mbadiwe? Why would a federal agency 1,000 kilometres away come to see the needs of my people in Ozumba Mbadiwe? Those are some things that we need to take forward and say that indeed we need to have a true federating state and be able to amend this constitution.”

The Supreme Court recently pronounced that the National Inland Waterways Authority has the exclusive power to regulate Nigeria’s inland waterways.

Shedding more light on Sanwo-Olu’s position, his Chief Press Secretary, Gboyega Akosile, in an interview with The PUNCH on Tuesday, said, “What the governor is saying is very simple. We have our resources. We wonder why there will be water in Lagos State and it will take an agency in Abuja to control our waterways. Why would Abuja be controlling that?

“These are the questions the governor is asking. There is a need for us to come together as a people. It is not a confrontational thing. It is a proposal. The states are better positioned to control the waterways within their areas.”

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