As the Chairman of Igbogbo/Baiyeku LCDA he has successfully made an impact in the community on different stands.
That was why on the evening of May 3rd he was put on the spotlight via WhatsApp to answer critical questions with regards to his overhaul management and system of approach to handling his jurisdiction in Ikorodu.
The following are excerpts from the interview session with the chairman of Igbogbo/Baiyeku LCDA, Mr. Olusesan Daini.
TOPIC: Governance In the Face of the Pandemic; The role of Local Government amidst competing needs of local communities.
IDYIM: So before we kick start Sir. I want to ask you briefly about the conference meeting the state Governor had with with all LGA chairmen. Do you have any information as regards that meeting for us here?
Mr. Daini: It was a good meeting on the process of gradual easing the lockdown in the state. The press release by Mr Governor posted earlier on the platform are part of the information from the meeting, We must just note that compliance is key in this first week to avoid total lockdown again.
IDYIM: Obviously the pandemic has taken its toll on systems, structure, and institutions, whereas, there are continuous and increasing demands on current resources and infrastructure, especially at the local level. As an administrator at the local government, being closer to the people and seeing the hard-effect of the pandemic on people, we expect that these days your office is the first call for all of these demands. How have you been able to (1) aggregate these demands, and (2) satisfy them?
Mr. Daini: Truly, LG’s/LCDA’S are the closest to the poeple so we have alot to do in war against this virus, The Council’s across the state have done alot in providing support to the populace and at a point we all got financial support from the state government to reduce the fast growing pressure from the citizens.
We have been doing alot in supporting the State govt in flattening the curve (reducing the spread). We categorized the approach and spread among people, We approached it from Wards, religious groups, traditional institutions, markets , special people and so on in the distribution.
IDYIM: As regards the support you received to help the masses, from a general stand point will you say it saturated well amongst the inhabitants of Ikorodu So far?
Mr. Daini: We got financial support from the state once but moral and human resources have been continuous, The same boiling water that softens the potato hardens the egg. We cant satisfy all.
IDYIM: Needless to say it’s not business as usual; we have seen the Federal Govt reduced budget, we are seeing dwindling revenue, uncertain expectations, and growing demands, among other call-to-action, what’s your plan for continuous efficient governance for your people. In other words, revenue from “above” may not be sufficient enough and may not flow as usual. Given these scenarios, What initiatives are you undertaking to make sure the people continue to enjoy the dividends of governance?
Mr Daini: This is a global issue and all government will follow the financial structures.
Governance is local and the peculiarity of each environment will determine the approach to the present economic situation due to the Corona virus pandemic.
We equally need to note that the situation in Nigeria is not only because of the Corona virus but the price of oil.
Before the pandemic, the Nigerian government had been grappling with weak recovery from the 2014 oil price shock, with GDP growth tapering around 2.3 percent in 2019.
It might be very hard to raise the bar of revenue generation because of our community and majority of business here are small scales. We need to first reduce the budget size and work on scale of preference.
I will be left to prioritising our delivery and make poeple’s oriented programmes topmost on our list.
IDYIM: Leading the charge in Igbogbo Bayeiku LCDA do you also synergies with other Agencies and private Institutions to add more support for the communities apart from the government aid?
Mr. Daini: We have engaged in some partnership programmes with private bodies and still working on more. And we are equally working on Grant’s but it’s a major challenge to secure local and international funding by local governments. We hope in due time this would be made public.
We are enjoying support of state and federal support through our representatives which I can say has been add value to us in Igbogbo Bayeku LCDA and Ikorodu Division at large.
We have roads, classrooms, health centers and so on that we have benefitted state and federal government.
The approach of each council in the state differs but we have a common idea which was implemented differently in Ikorodu Division.
IDYIM: Talking about support, we heard that N11million was given to all LCDA Chairmen by the State Government as Palliative support for 1st and second lockdown, How true is this information?
Mr Daini: It is wrong and untrue that we got N11Million Naira for palliative support, But the State government supported us with money which was not up to that amount. The information is not correct but as I have stated earlier that the same boiling water that softens the potato hardens the egg. We can’t satisfy all.
IDYIM: There will probably be a time sooner or later that the government would strategize means for schools and religious Gatherings to commence physically amidst CoVid-19 Pandemic. What are your foreseeable plans to help the safety of both the Indigene and non-indigenes if the government gives the go-ahead for schools and churches/Mosques programs to commence again?
Mr Daini: The Federal and State government have been unable to completely prevent COVID-19’s spread. If cases double every day, hospitals will be quickly overwhelmed, leaving patients without the care.
But the growth rate can be slowed by reducing the average number of cases that a single case gives rise to. With this my analysis, am sure the Government will not just open up the system without necessary actions.
We have been directed by Mr Gov on process, plans and implementation procedures for easing the lockdown and we will carry all out. We are equally going to produce facemask to support MaskupLagos project of the state which is one of the major action to reduce the spread.
IDYIM: One Last question before you go Sir, Even in this times of pandemic The problem of Cultism in Ikorodu is not new. And as much as it would only take a collective efforts to curb it, As a Leader what are your suggested measures to help bring a lasting resolution to this internal crisis we face temporarily.
Mr Daini: The issue of Cultism in our division need multidimensional approach which relevant stakeholders in the Division are presently attending to and we will come out soonest to make it known to the public, But note that it’s a collective task and we will solve it together.