The Adeyemi Bero Auditorium located inside the Lagos State secretariat in Ikeja, southwest Nigeria was a beehive of activities on Friday, 1st August, 2014 as chairmen of local government and local council development areas in Lagos State inaugurated an empowerment programme meant to improve the lives of people in the state.
The event which took place inside and outside the auditorium was attended by virtually all the 57 council chairmen in the state.
According to the Chairman of Conference 57, umbrella organisation of the council chairmen in the state, Akeem Omoyele Sulaiman, told journalists at the event that the programme was meant to reduce poverty among the beneficiaries through empowerment.
“Our aim is to teach our people how to fish rather than giving them pieces of fishes to eat. Through this programme, we are encouraging our people to be self-sufficient, self-reliant and self-employed,” Sulaiman, chairman of Bariga LCDA, said.
The Governor of Lagos State, Babatunde Raji Fashola, SAN, who was represented by the state Commissioner for Transport, Comrade Kayode Opeifa, commended the council bosses for taking it upon themselves to complement the efforts of the state government at improving the lives of the people and reducing poverty in the society.
“This is a commendable programme which will go a long way in complementing the efforts at the state level to reduce poverty in the society and make live worth living. We should all therefore commend the council chairmen in our state for this very huge efforts at improving the lives of our people,” Fashola said.
Also speaking at the event, the state Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Ademorin Kuye, also commended the council chairmen for the good gesture while the Vice Chairman of the state chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC) for Lagos West Senatorial District, Chief Funsho Ologunde, also lauded the council bosses for keeping alive the tenets and programmes of the party noting empowerment with a view to banishing poverty was one of the major programmes of the APC.
The Secretary of Conference 57 and chairman of Itire-Ikate LCDA, Hakeem Adisa Bamgbola, told thegazellenews.com that the chairmen decided to put in place the programme to make the people self-employed. “You can see that the materials we have here are all meant to assist in developing the professions of the beneficiaries so that they can become self-reliant,” he said.
His comment was corroborated by the trio of: Comrade Ayodele Adewale, Publicity Secretary of Conference 57 and chairman of Amuwo Odofin Local Government; Alhaji Abdur-Rasheed Abiodun Mafe, chairman of Mosan-Okunola LCDA; and Honourable Shamusudeen Abiodun Olaleye, chairman of Isolo LCDA.
“We want to make the beneficiaries not only self employed but also employers of labour in the nearest future,” Adewale said.
Mafe was of the belief that the programme will go a long way in improving the standard of living of the beneficiaries. “When you give a man the tool of his trade, you are improving his standard of living and this what we have done here,” he said.
Olaleye stated that the idea to present vocational materials was meant to teach the beneficiaries how to fish. “We don’t want to give them fish but teach them how to fish. We want to make them self-reliant, self-sufficient, self-employed and employers of labour. If we give them cash, they will spend it in few minutes but these will greatly aid their businesses,” the Isolo LCDA boss said.
Among items distributed are: lots of crates of soft drinks, pop-corn machines, pepper-grinding machines, generators, hair styling dryers, refrigerators and freezers among others.