Wednesday, October 25, 2017
Governors from the 17 States that cover
the Southern Region of Nigeria, converged in Lagos on Monday, October 23rd, 2017 for a
strategic meeting, the first since 2005 which was hosted by former Governor
Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu.
This covered the South-East, South-West
and South-South zones of the country and was another opportunity for the
Governors to forge a Southern Coalition in the areas of socio-economic
development, commerce, industrialization amongst others.
Proshare News brings you 5 key takeaways
from the forum;
A Robust Attendance
The Forum had a robust attendance as
widely expected with 13 State Governors present, while Cross River, Delta and
Anambra sent their Deputy Governors. This was a welcome development as
the leaders were ready to engage and discuss issues beyond political party
borders with Governors Akinwunmi Ambode(Lagos) and Udom Emmanuel (Akwa Ibom) as
C0-Chairmen of the conference.
Devolution of Powers
& Fiscal Federalism
The Southern Governors Forum resolved at the end of
its meeting to work collectively, in pushing for devolution of powers and
achieving fiscal federalism. Reading the communiqué Governor Akinwunmi Ambode
of Lagos State was optimistic that the Southern Governors Forum will work
assiduously to drive a robust and connected infrastructure, that will
accelerate the economic development of the States in the Southern belt.
According to Governor Ambode “Lagos State had fought and won several legal battles
since 1999 that have systematically strengthened her autonomy and enhanced her
fiscal viability. These victories belonged, not only to Lagos, but also to
other states, adding that, if Lagos could achieve so much by fighting alone,
the Southern Governors’ Forum will accomplish more through collective planning
Ambode to lead the SGF
Apart from serving as the chief host of
the forum, Governor Akinwunmi Ambode of Lagos State was unanimously appointed
as the Chairman of the SGF. Governors Sierakibe Dickson (Bayelsa) and David
Umahi (Ebonyi) will serve as Co-Chairmen.
The forum resolved that it will
participate actively in the ongoing 1999 constitution amendment, working
with the State House of Assemblies to ensure a coordinated effort to
strengthening democracy, federalism and the rule of law
Port Harcourt, Next
At the end of the engaging Southern
Governors Forum in Lagos, it was resolved that the next destination for the
meeting of the Governors will be Port Harcourt, Rivers State the “Treasure Base
of Nigeria”. This marks opportunities for new partnership for the development
of Southern Nigeria.