The Lagos State Deputy Governor, Dr. Kadri Obafemi Hamzat has enjoined social clubs, religious organizations and other stakeholders to come together and get involved in rebuilding the country to enviable height. Hamzat stated this at the 72nd anniversary lecture of the Lagos Country Club in Ikeja on Tuesday.
Speaking on the theme ‘Imperatives of Good Governance and the Role of Non State Actors’, the deputy governor stressed that it behooves on all citizens to come together and develop the nation saying good governance at all levels is key to the success of Nigeria’s democracy.
Noting that restructuring is not the only issue confronting the country, he also identified the inability of state actors to create an enabling environment for businesses to thrive, poverty, corruption and insecurity as other challenges bedeviling the nation.
The deputy governor noted that there has been an inherent discrimination against Nigeria by external forces which her citizens must unite against.
He explained that various agitations in the country are due to the clash of interest festered by ethnicity and race, which if not properly managed will lead to the breakdown of the nation.
“Of a truth, the wheel of our nation is perceived to churn in favour of a few oligarchs. Time it was when our national discourse has content like cabal in the Presidency and it has also been our lot to contend with the clash of interest fostered by the tribal, sectional and often fratricidal cleavage of interest.
“The myriad of explanations have been given for the state of things and among them is the inability of state actors to provide enabling environment for individuals to be employed gainfully. Put simply amidst substantial natural and human resources, the citizens are essentially poor.
“The existence of social clubs like yours, with its diverse membership portends great potentials for the influence that can be welded in ensuring that our national discourse can be more meaningful.
“As opinion moulders and by maintaining a code of ethics, we can begin to see emerge the nation of our dreams.
“It is therefore clear to me that there is different spectrum of institutions especially government, academia, social organizations that must come together to free our nation from her current state of paralyses and lift her up towards a bright future that potentially await her,” Hamzat stressed.
Earlier, while welcoming guests to the 72nd anniversary lecture, the president of the club, Arc. Funmi Bamkole, tasked Nigerians to co-create good governance, saying that democracy, good governance and modality cannot be imported or imposed from outside the country.
Bamkole maintained that good governance is the pathway to the future that offers a framework to generate economic growth, achieve social justice, exercise environmental stewardship and strengthen governance.
The number one member of the club stressed that 72 years in the life of any man is enough to qualify him for the status of a sage and to make him a repertoire of wisdom, an archive of knowledge as well as a pathfinder of purposeful direction.
He revealed that with a nominal membership strength of over 14,000 amassed over the years and still counting, Lagos Country Club has confidently prided herself the foremost family club in Nigeria with aims and objectives of promoting recreation and social interests of members, family values and inter-ethnic and interracial understanding among members.
The president announced that the 72nd anniversary lecture like many other activities of the club, is low-key, due to the Covid pandemic ravaging the world.
He emphasized that going by the pace and standard of governance in Lagos State and the abundance of measurable deliverables of this current administration in the state and indeed past governments of this state, the choice of the speaker on the topic of the lecture is a round peg in a round hole.
According to him, “The government of Lagos state and our dear club have always had a close and mutually benefitting relationship over the years, with the government being ever ready to give us a listening ear each time we approach them.
“We, at Lagos Country Club, therefore, owe our members, our immediate environment and the country a duty to add value, not only on recreational activities, but on collective governance of the society.
“His Excellency, the Deputy Governor of Lagos State, Dr. Obafemi Hamzat is not new in government and not new to us in Lagos Country Club where we have records of his personal contributions to our collective patrimony and without prejudice to his intellectual offerings today. We are confident that he is aligned with us on this drive to ensure good governance at all levels, not only in Lagos State but in Nigeria as a whole.
“To the entire membership of Lagos Country Club, I say happy celebrations. May we as a family club continue to grow in leaps and bounds as our years increase,” the president concluded.
The high point of the event was the presentation of awards to the deputy governor and the past executive members of the club, for their meritorious contributions to the growth of the club.
The cutting of the 72nd anniversary lecture’s cake was performed by the Chairman, Board of Trustees, Aare Kola Oyefeso, supported by the incumbent and past executive officers of the club.
Among the dignitaries that graced the occasion were Mr. Muiz Banire (SAN), former Legal Adviser of the All Progressives Congress; Dr. Wale Ahmed, Lagos State Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs.
Others were a member of Board of Trustees, Chief Oliver Okoye, the immediate past president of the club, Chief Tajudeen Akande FCA and his wife; Mr. Alawiye King, Chairman, SUBEB; Mr. Babatunde Ogala, the first female town planner in Nigeria, Mrs. Catherine Kehinde George, amongst others.