Proposal To Rebuild Shomolu General Hospital Tears Stakeholders Apart
The request by the Lagos State government for the authority of Somolu Local Government to cede the council Secretariat, for the construction of a befitting and standard General Hospital for the Community, has resulted to serious controversial issues and pitch major stakeholders within the local government against each others, investigation revealed.
It was gathered that a Monitoring Team from Alausa had on Tuesday, April 13, 2012, visited Somolu General Hospital and confirmed that the State government has given a marching order for the Local Government to vacate the land presently occupied by the council, for the development of the Hospital as requested by a human rights group, Human Rights Monitoring Agenda (HURMA), during a protest last year.
Sources said that the State Government proposal to acquire the council Secretariat for the construction of the hospital, led to an urgent stakeholders meeting which almost ended in disarray in the council secretariat. This urgent stakeholders meeting with the Chairman of Somolu Local Government was also extended to the HURMA office to send representative.
The Stakeholders’ meeting with the theme: “Ceding the current Local Government Secretariat land to the Lagos State government for construction of a standard General Hospital”, was held at the council Secretariat on Wednesday, April 14, 2021, but ended in a deadlock.
Th State Government move to use the council Secretariat for General Hospital and the Stakeholders meeting, were as a result of a protest by Human Rights Monitoring Agenda (HURMA Global Resource Initiative) on the agitation to rebuild Somolu General Hospital which was taken seriously by the State Government.
Following HURMA’s protest, it was learnt that the Lagos State House of Assembly later set up a committee on the matter and a meeting was later held where HURMA was given the complete assurance that the matter would be attended to and HURMA’s genuine agitation for the poor community would be addressed by governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu.
In attendance at the meeting were the Council chairman, Hon. Ahmed Salawudeen; a member of House of Assembly, Hon. Olowo Rotimi; some past local government administrators; the Baales; representative of the State Hospital Management, from Somolu General Hospital and some other concerned CDA and CDCs representatives.
At the meeting, it was gathered that the council Chairman had proposed to the community to support ‘giving away’ of the council’s legislative building, to the hospital project instead of ceding the whole land of the secretariat.
It was gathered that some of those who were at the meeting vehemently rejected the idea that the land of the secretariat should be used for a general hospital.
Source at the meeting said an APC leader in the area was quoted to have said “Shomolu Local Government secretariat is the heritage of the people, hence it cannot be used for general hospital”. He was said to have suggested that the government should look for alternatives elsewhere around Shomolu Local Government.
While a group at the meeting was said to have suggested Ijebu-Tedo Primary school or the land that belongs to Shomolu LG that has been encroached somewhere around Bolaji Omupo’, as alternatives.
A former Sole Administrator of the Local Government was also said to have proposed that UNP School, should be used for the general hospital. It was also gathered that some respected members of the community held strongly to the position that the General Hospital should be given priority over other projects.
Honourable Gbenga Abdulai (a.k.a Na Gbenga) was said to have supported the idea of the State government acquiring the council secretariat for the construction of a general hospital. “Life is more important than office. The General Hospital is the most important thing to everybody”, he stated.
A member of the Hspital Board, who pleaded for anonymity, said; “if Shomolu does not seize this opportunity of a general hospital now, it will lose it forever”.