Eko United, a Collective of concerned Lagosians has applauded Mr. Babajide Ogunsanwo, a Data Analyst and popular Channels’ Television Contributor for his incisive presentation at a public discourse programme hosted by the organization.
The discourse series titled Eko Public Square which had its theme as “Rethinking Lagos: COVID -19 and beyond” featured Mr. Ogunsanwo, Founder, The Factbox Company and Seun Onigbinde, Co-Founder/Director, BudgIT while Eko United’s Chief Scribe, Emilia Asim-Ita was the moderator.
In his presentation, Mr Ogunsanwo state that population density was to the Coronavirus what sugar is to Ants, noting that the Lagos State Government needed to be more future-focused and future-driven around urban planning and development because without this, there is every probability that Lagos would still be an epicenter in the event of another pandemic.
He stated that the only way information gets to the grassroots is to decentralize the information dissemination structure, so the government at the grassroots level should create viable channels peculiar to its people.
In his words “The Lagos State Government needs to partner with the first port of call of the masses (when it comes to health challenges) Proprietary Patent Medicine Vendors (PPMVs) aka Chemists; to conduct surveys and get feedback, and also to pass across vital information.
“As Lagosians, we need to ask ourselves what roles we play in the future and development of Lagos. How do we choose our leaders at all levels? This is a question that should be on the minds of Lagosians. Leaders need to be chosen based on competency and capacity to make good decisions in due time”
Mr. Ogunsanwo also asserted that the State Government needed to ramp up the budget for healthcare and education. Insisting that what the 10 % allocation put in the 2019 budget was abysmal.
He urged the Lagos State Government to stop incentivizing gangsterism by ceding leadership of the informal economy to gangs. Stating that the unrest in Lagos is largely as a result of a fall out of the people that can’t have their daily takings at the bus-stops, car parks and markets etc.
According to him “Lagos needs to unwind the informal structure of leadership, there is also a need to put in place formal structures to the handle informal economy channels”
He called on the government to urgently redefine its social contract with citizens with a view of ensuring transparency in the use of resources, while urging the government to create a job bond which can be used by the MSMEs to stabilize cash flow, reduce growing rate of unemployment as well as boost state IGR.
He called on the state government to kick start massive investment in the primary and secondary health care systems to bring them up to par with privately-owned facilities, while creating an all-encompassing health insurance scheme.
In his view, these tools are important in the fight against the pandemic because “without health, we have nothing”.
It was as a result of this well-thought out lecture that Eko United’s Captain, Mr Wole Olagundoye deemed it fit to present a framed certificate of appreciation to Mr Ogunsanwo on behalf of the organisation.