Lagos State Governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode on Thursday charged fellow All Progressives Congress (APC) Governors to devise ingenious ways and means of meeting the expectations of the electorate.
The Governor, who spoke through his Deputy, Dr. Oluranti Adebule, at the opening of the inaugural meeting of Secretaries to State (SSG) in APC states held at Ikeja, Lagos, said that the call was in line with the vision of the party to provide accountable and responsive leadership to the citizenry.
According to Ambode, the Progressive Governors’ Forum (PGF) initiated the Quarterly meetings of the SSGs as part of efforts to meet the expectations of the electorates as well as boost accountability among APC serving Governors to same.
“For us on the PGF platform, this is not a moment for self-adulation, but that of self-examination and stock taking. Our desire is to promote synergy and experience sharing, as a basis for the adoption and uniform implementation of policy initiatives across all APC States.”
“This makes it necessary for us to frequently present our thoughts, strategies and actions to the honest scrutiny of our colleagues. That is the very essence of the peer review effort we are promoting by this gathering”, he stressed
The Governor explained that the Nigerian Governors Forum (NGF), by a 2007 mandate of National Economic Council developed and implemented a comprehensive State Peer Review Mechanism (SPRM) with the objective of helping states to improve their development performances through periodic reviews of progress in the implementation of developmental policies, plans and programmes.
In a keynote address titled: “Job Creation and Social Protection Initiatives in States”, the Country Manager of International Finance Corporation (IFC), Mrs Eme Essien Lore said for Nigeria to achieve her goals in job creation, the efforts must be private-sector led.
While acknowledging the roles already played by the government at the centre in the campaign for the creation of jobs, she stated that more needs to be done in terms of collaboration with the private sector.
She posited that in order to reduce poverty and increase more inclusive growth, the new jobs to be created must be more productive and must also provide higher income than they currently do.
The IFC Country Manager added that between 2010 and 2030, by the analysis of the world body, there would be a need for additional 40 million jobs in the country.
Speaking earlier, the Governor of Ogun State and Co-Chair of the PGF Governance Programme, who was represented by the Secretary to the State Government, Mr Taiwo Adeoluwa said the forum provides an avenue for SSGs to compare notes on how to do it better.
While commending the organizers for a job well done, he said the meeting is about taking stock for peer review as the coming together would have a salutary effect on the nation.
In his introductory remarks, the Director General of the Progressive Governors Forum, Mr Salihu Lukman said the core objective of the Forum is to identify best practices among the states which can be replicated.