Chinelo Obogo, Lagos
Immediate past Governor of Lagos State Akinwunmi Ambode was absent at the inauguration ceremony of his successor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, which held at the Tafawa Balewa Square, Lagos, Wednesday morning.
Although no official reason was given for Ambode’s absence, his name and picture featured prominently in the inauguration programme, an indication that he was expected at the event as it is the tradition in the state. However, his deputy, Dr Idiat Adebule, was present.
Ambode had handed over to Sanwo-olu at the Government House on Tuesday, 28 May, and said at the brief ceremony that his tenancy had expired in the Government House and urged for support for the incoming governor.
Sanwo-Olu and the state deputy governor, Dr Obafemi Hamzat, were both sworn in by the Chief Judge of the state, Justice Opeyemi Oke, after they had taken their oath of office.
While giving his inaugural speech, Sanwo-Olu promised to select the best and most qualified people to form his cabinet.
He said: “My goal is to advance the social and economic progress of this state and its people, regardless of your faith, social class, or your origin of birth. I shall select the best and most qualified people to hold positions in our government.
“My door shall remain open to all. I shall seek the advice of the learned, the wise and the ordinary Lagosian, for in the common man resides much wisdom and fairness of thought.
“While one cannot help but hear the kind words of friends, I must pay even closer attention to the voice of my critics.
“In constructive criticism lies the seed of improvement. The Deputy Governor, Dr Kadri Obafemi Hamzat and I are single-minded in our desire to bequeath to our successors a far greater Lagos than the one we inherited today
“By investing in critical infrastructure, we will accelerate the growth of our economy and empower the private sector who are the real engines of growth.
“We must break the deadlock that shackles our power distribution, provide sustainable urban settlements that addresse the current deficit, while at the same time, building a smart city that achieves urban harmony and sets a new bar in our nation. We will make sure that we create the right environment in which security and safety of lives and property are guaranteed.”