The new Governor of Lagos State, Akinwunmi Ambode has dumped the posh State House, Marina where the former Governor, Babatunde Fashola lived for eight years, preferring to stay at the State House, Ikeja, Lagos, Southwest Nigeria.
The State House, Ikeja was built by former Governor Bola Tinubu and is meant to be both official and residential, but Fashola had preferred to live at the Marina State House rather than Ikeja.
At a meeting with Permanent Secretaries at the weekend, Ambode said he would be living at the State House, Ikeja to be puntual by resuming work at 8:00am.
According to him, his decision to live at the State House, Ikeja meant that he would be at his desk at 8am daily, urging public servants to ensure they resumed early for work.
Ambode warned that resumption to office by all civil servants at 8:00am is a must as it was not going to be business as usual.
“I am advising the public servants to align with my administration. I expect all public servants to also be at their desks by 8:00am so that if I have cause to get in touch with anyone, they would be readily available,” he said.
Ambode said his administration would embark on continuous reforms in the public service and to demonstrate that the government belonged to the citizens, saying that “you have put us here as servants to serve you and not you serving us. Today we are committed to that creed.
“Moving forward, the Civil Service will be strengthened and made to respond to the needs of all citizens in the same manner quality services are rendered in the private sector.
“My administration is prepared to take the decisions needed to promote merit and professionalism. To restructure where required, eliminate poor Human Resource practices and accelerate the pace of reforms in the spirit of good governance,” he said.
Ambode formally resumed for work on Monday morning at about 8:00am at the State House, Ikeja after he was sworn in on Friday at the Tafawa Balewa Square, TBS, Lagos.
Also at his inaugural dinner at the weekend, Ambode said his administration would ensure a Lagos where the average resident lives, works, enjoys and have so much prosperity coming with it, adding that he would harmonise tourism, entertainment, arts and sports for excellence.
“When we say you should live in Lagos, work in Lagos and enjoy with Lagos, we mean that we are going to put tourism, entertainment, arts and sports together for excellence, and that is what I have always been preaching and that is what we are going to work for in the next four years.
“I just want to enjoin all of us that with the collaboration we have had, we want each and every one of us to come together to start to propel the ideas that can give us an ideal Lagos,” he said.
He said that was what the All Progressives Congress (APC) stood for and what that change is all about and “that is what the party has decided at the national and state levels that it is going to give to Nigerians.
The Governor also thanked all those who graced his swearing in, including members of the diplomatic and the business community.
Former Governor Fashola, later proposed a toast to Governor Ambode, his wife, Mrs. Bolanle Ambode; the Deputy Governor, Dr Oluranti Adebule and the new administration.
The event also featured an inauguration ball with the Governor taking to the dance floor with his wife, Bolanle while Dammy Krane provided delightful tunes for the couple.
The event attracted dignitaries such as the Deputy Governor and her husband, Mr Saheed Adebule; the immediate past Deputy Governor, Mrs Adejoke Orelope-Adefulire, First Lady of Osun State, Mrs Sherifat Aregbesola; former First Lady and Senator representing Lagos Central, Senator Oluremi Tinubu and several other guests.