By Sola Fanawopo
Of the Babajide Sanwolu’s “expressive and outlandish “ campaigns before the poll, what appealed to me most was his main slogan TOGETHER LAGOS. It gives me hope that the governor is committed to building an inclusive city, a Lagos where everyone can access the huge opportunities the city provides irrespective of social status, tribes and politics affiliation.
What is an inclusive Lagos ?
An inclusive Lagos in my own opinion is a city in which the processes of development include a wide variety of citizens and activities.
Governor Sanwoolu must ensure that the city maintain its wealth and creative power by avoiding marginalization, which compromises the richness of interaction upon which the city depends .
Lagos is Lagos today because of the riches of its diversities. This is what makes Lagos tick. This is what gives Lagos its uniqueness. This is why it is ahistorical to play a game of exclusivity in Lagos.
The governor must continue to make everyone welcome in Lagos. This is the essence of Lagos.
Why i am so keen about inclusive Lagos? The answer is very simple—— inclusive Lagos is both more affluent and more socially just.
Inclusive Lagos is more affluent because the city-state mobilizes and enables a wider spectrum of people and talents than a city in which some of those human resources are marginalized.
Lagos is also more socially just. By including the otherwise marginalized in the productive activities and opportunities of the city, Lagos offers better access to pathways for social and economic betterment.
Inclusive Lagos works against social and economic exclusion, and their shadow: urban decay.
It works against dividing the city into ghettoes of despair without opportunities for upward economic mobility.
It does not mean freezing growth or preventing redevelopment; rather, the opposite—encouraging more sustainable, prosperous, comprehensive growth and development by avoiding exclusivity and dislocation and the heavy, often ignored costs they carry.
Who should the governor include? Inclusive Lagos brings otherwise marginalized activities into the center to join otherwise privileged activities, so one may see the following sharing urban spaces,
• rich and poor
• different ethnicities
• businesses and the arts
• goods production, knowledge work, learning and play
• students, workers and retirees
• people and products from the surrounding countryside
• children and adults
• people of all varieties of ability and disability
• new immigrants, visitors, and founding families
• inclusive governance that brings all of these perspectives into continuous shaping of Lagos.
May governor Sanwoolu succeed .