It is often said that the true hallmark of a modern society is its capacity to discipline nature and within reason, bend it to human needs and aspirations.
In Lagos, the country’s commercial focal point and aspiration to a global mega city, the government has no doubt been compassionate towards attaining its desire.
As part of its mission, the current administration is not resting on its oars as it is committed to immortalising heroes who worked hard for the emergence of Lagos as not only the Centre of Excellence, but also one of the most prominent city states in Africa.
Located in front of the State House of Assembly and occupies a land area of approximately 21,880sqm, the glamorous look of Johnson Jakande Tinubu Park has not only added value to the aesthetic value of the state, it will place the state on a world map of tourism.
Johnson Jakande Tinubu Park is divided by a gigantic waterfall. By the left, is the children’s playing ground while on the right is the facial statue of the three former governors of Lagos State surrounded by various African flags. Few steps further is another waterfall and a provision made for adults with free Wi-Fi access.
Speaking with New Telegraph, the Head of Public Affairs, Lagos State Parks and Garden Agency, Mr Sanusi Abdulateef, said the idea behind the recreation of the garden was to make it a public event centre. He added that it was initially called the Scenic park and was restricted to only few persons, saying the park was unveiled earlier than the actual date in order to serve as an alternative to Ndubuisi Kanu’s Square.
“The unveiling of the park was supposed to be early next year but because we know Ndubuisi Kanu’s Square will be crowded during this season, we had to do the unveiling.” Mr Abdulateef said.
According to him, the park is funded and maintained by the government and requires no entrance fee from anyone. He confidently assured how secured the park is security safe, urging everyone to come and enjoy what the Ambode’s administration has offered them for free. His words: “I expect everyone to come and enjoy the benefits of the park without having to pay anything in return.”
Further into his chat with New Telegraph, Abdulateef revealed that everyone is allowed to celebrate their birthdays, anniversary etc for free but once the event becomes a major one, the person will have to pay for it.
However, some of the visitors who had come to the park to celebrate with their loved ones, could not hide their joy as they spoke delightedly to New Telegraph.
To Mrs. Adigun Abiodun, a parent who had brought her kids to the park,said the park was the place where the best of fun could be had.
“This is the best place to catch fun. It is free and we are actually enjoying it. Initially, this place wasn’t as funny as it is now. I prefer it now to how it was before,” she said excitedly.
An excited mother, who simply identified herself as Mrs. Ganiyat Animashaun, commended the state government for adding another tourist centre to the beautiful look of the state, adding that the government should continue with its kind gesture to the people of the state.
“It is a good initiative. We are really enjoying the dividends of democracy. Kudos to Governor Ambode for the great thing he hath done. He should keep doing the good work”.
On his part, Mr Kola Oluwamuyiwa applauded the government for putting up such a good thing as the park. He also urged the governor to make it up to international standard by putting more facilities.
However, the Lagos State Governor, Akinwumi Ambode, at the commissioning of the park, said the three former Governors were outstanding in their contributions to the development of the state and wrote their names in the sands of time, especially during their time in office.
Going down memory lane, Ambode said Brigadier Johnson, laid the foundation as the pioneer governor of the newly created Lagos State in 1967 and constructed the 60.7-kilometre Lagos–Badagry Expressway linking Nigeria with countries in the West African sub region, the Itoikin Bridge linking Epe and Ikorodu; the Eko Bridge and a network of roads and bridges that opened up the new Lagos.
He said Jakande, the first elected Civilian Governor of Lagos State, who held office for four years, introduced masses-oriented programmes, particularly in the education, housing and health sectors.
Ambode added that apart from the successful implementation of the Free Education Programme, Jakande’s administration also established new neighbourhood Primary and Secondary schools, constructed over 30,000 housing units in different parts of the state for the benefit of low income earners.
The governor, while describing Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu as the architect of modern Lagos, said his tenure witnessed the development of a blue print for the future development of the state, which successive administrations have continued to build upon and actualize today.
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