Worried by the poor state of power supply and its negative impact on the state economy, the governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress in Lagos State, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, has vowed to get the state out of the National Grid if he is elected.
Sanwo-Olu further promised to work with the generation and distribution companies operating in Lagos to deal with legal and commercial issues that are inhibiting power supply so that Lagosians and businesses can enjoy regular electricity to boost social life and economic output.
The APC standard bearer made the pledge on Friday during a gubernatorial debate organized by the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry, between him and his closest rival in the race, Jimi Agbaje of the Peoples Democratic Party.
Sanwo-Olu who gave a hint that preliminary discussions have started with Eko and Ikeja Discos, the two power distributors in the State, and his team is working with them to fashion out a lasting solution to the power crisis in the State.
He said: “I have in the last two months held meetings with the two discos in the State.
“I’m aware of what the challenges are and they are certainly not about generation.
“It goes beyond that.
“There are 40 per cent to 50 per cent commercial and technical losses that the discos are recording right now.
“There are huge receivables sitting on the tables.
“I understand what the issues are and I will tackle them head-on once we assume office.
“The beauty of the whole thing for me is not even in increasing the megawatts but to take Lagos out of the national grid.
“I am promising you today that I will work towards removing Lagos from the national grid.”
The APC candidate also promised to bring innovation into revenue generation, noting that more people need to be included in the tax net.
He explained that government should make visible impacts in the lives of the citizens, adding that this will encourage them to perform their civic responsibilities without anyone forcing them.
Sanwo-Olu said: “We will work on regeneration, create wealth for people in places such as Ajegunle, Ijora Badia and the rest.
“When you give titles to people in such places, it automatically shoots up the commercial value of their property.
“They will have a bankable document they can leverage to increase their wealth.”
Sanwo-Olu emphasized on how he will solve the seemingly intractable traffic gridlocks in the State, which he said he has come up with creative solutions to adopt once he is elected as governor.
He said: “My deputy and I have undergone a study of the traffic situation in the State and we have discovered that there are about 63 heavy traffic points in Lagos.
“The interesting thing is that it is not one solution fits all.
“There are some of them whose solution I will describe as low hanging fruit such as removal of roundabout or erection of traffic lights, while some others require long term solutions.
“Above all, we are set to fix the Lagos traffic gridlocks.”