Fashola Commissions New 2,640-Shop Capacity Main Tejuosho Shopping Complex, Yaba
• Urges tax compliance, vote for APC to ensure full implementation of long-term radical infrastructure renewal
Aug 15, 2014 - Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babatunde Fashola SAN, Friday officially reopened the Phase One of the rebuilt Main Tejuosho Shopping Complex, Yaba, urging Lagosians to continue to pay their taxes and ensure they vote in an All Progressives Congress (APC) Government in the next election as a guarantee to ensure the full implementation of the long-term infrastructure renewal plan for the State.
The former Tejuosho Market, one of the major trading and commercial centres in the State, was gutted by fire in on December 17, 2007, and was later shut down on expert advice by the State Government which decided to rebuild it in phases into a major Shopping Complex.
In his remarks at the occasion which took place at the premises of the redeveloped market, Fashola said the complex was part of the long-term radical infrastructure renewal plan by the State Government which, according to him, "is driven by far-sighted vision and pursued by thoroughly committed public servants that will ensure that it is delivered whether I am here or not".
The Governor added, "The plan has been made, the vision is shared and the commitment is real. It requires only two things to ensure that the vision becomes a reality; first it will require you to continue to pay your taxes. Secondly, it will require you to continue to vote to keep the progressive party, the All Progressives Congress in power to continue its people-oriented policies for the development of the State".
On the available facilities in the new complex, Fashola said his administration has gone ahead to increase the number of lock-up shops from 1,484 before the fire incident to 2,640 in the new complex adding that instead of the illegal attachments which were used as key-clamps in the old market, Government has provided 1,251 key-clamps almost double the illegal attachments built at the old car-park.
Other facilities, the Governor said, include banking spaces, eight lifts to enable goods, services and people move up, two escalators for up and down movement of people, two ramps designed to assist physically handicapped people to get into and out of the building and a crèche where nursing mothers can attend to and keep their children while they are trading.
There is also a dedicated Fire Service Station within the complex with fire fighting systems built in the market to forestall any incident of fire disaster, he also said, adding that whereas extensions were created in the space provided as car-park in the old market, a dedicated 800-vehicle capacity car-park has been built as part of the new shopping complex.
He warned that there should be no illegal extensions in the new complex urging shop owners to resist such extensions. He added, "Those who try to create extensions must face resistance by those who are owners of the market, who do business here. There must be no illegal extensions, any time you see it tell us, let us know and we will come and remove it".
On the method of payment for the shops, Fashola explained that the shops are offered to prospective traders on Owner-Occupier basis whereby the owner-occupiers would pay for their shops gradually and overtime adding that it would take them eight years of mortgage payment to fully pay for their shops.
Pointing out that shops and houses are not things that could be bought in one day like other commodities, Fashola declared, "If you see the quality of what has been provided inside here for you, that is the quality of what we have expected for you; not to be trading by the road sides. You deserve better and that is what we did here".
"What is good costs money. What we have decided to do is to make it easier and convenient for you to pay for it gradually so that you can do your business and put your profit back to own what you have", the Governor said adding that without the provision of the complex, the traders would have resorted to all sorts of make-shift shops which would have ended up in a disorganized market.
He expressed appreciation "to First Bank Plc and its leadership, especially Mr. Bisi Onasanya, "for providing the financing support for the project construction and for agreeing to our request to provide mortgages for small owners to pay their shops gradually and overtime".
Fashola said it is a way to encourage the poor in the society to aspire to a better life and to lead them to that better life, telling them what the challenges are and pushing the challenges for them so that they too can better and get out of their situation. "That is the way to take people out of poverty", he said.
"The role of leadership is to help the people at the bottom of the ladder to dream and aspire to take their first foot on that ladder with the help of their colleagues behind them, telling them it is time; so that is the flexibility by First Bank Plc which is commendable given the challenging market in which it operates", the Governor said adding that by that act, the bank has helped about 2,105 people to begin to make equity contribution for ownership of their shops.
He thanked all the traders "for their understanding during the construction exercise', adding that there are many lessons that have been learnt during the building process that would help in the building of future development of other projects "that would make even more efficient and certainly better impact on the people".
The Governor also thanked Alhaja Ganiyat "Mama Dosunmu" whom he described as the project manager, project engineer, supervisor, architect and project planner all rolled into one, the Iyaloja-General, Chief (Mrs.) Folashade Tinubu-Ojo, the Deputy Governor, Hon. (Mrs.) Adejoke Orelope-Adefulire, the Commissioner for Physical Planning and Urban Development, Town Planner Olutoyin Ayinde and all members of the building team for their dedication.
Congratulating the traders for the new complex, Fashola reiterated that the parking space should not be converted into a trading space pointing out that it would be to the advantage of the traders to have a moving traffic that would help to bring customers than a traffic gridlock that would scare them away.
In his remarks earlier, Managing Director of First Bank Plc, Mr. Olabisi Onasanya, described the project as a veritable example of how a Private Public Partnership could be deployed adding that the opening ceremony signified the beginning of a new dawn in commercial activities in the State and in the country.
In her goodwill remarks, the Iyaloja-General, Chief (Mrs.) Folashade Tinubu-Ojo, expressed her appreciation to the Governor for fulfilling his promise to the market traders and urged all the traders to ensure that they abide strictly by the sanitation rules of the market.
Others, who gave goodwill messages at the occasion, including the Babaloja of Tejuosho Market, Mr. Adeshina Oyegunle, the President Ndigbo Traders in Tejuosho and others, also thanked the Governor for keeping to his promise of giving the former shop owners in the old market the opportunity to return after the reconstruction.
Earlier in his welcome address, Commissioner for Physical Planning and Urban Development, Town Planner Olutoyin Ayinde, said Government was conscious of the untold suffering which the fire disaster in the market brought to the traders pointing out that this informed the determination not to lose the opportunity to restore their hope, adding, "It is a proof of our determination to stand out and not do things the way they used to be done".
Also present at the occasion were members of the State Executive Council including the Deputy Governor, Hon. (Mrs.) Adejoke Orelope-Adefulire,Commissioner for Works and Infrastructure, Dr. Obafemi Hamzat and his Finance and Information and Strategy counterparts, Mr. Ayo Gbeleyi and Mr. Lateef Ibirogba respectively, prominent members of the Organized Private sector, top executives of First Bank Plc, market traders and other top government functionaries.