By Jimi Lawal
Lagos state is undoubtedly the commercial centre of Nigeria with the highest Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) of N45billion monthly. However, many Lagosians argue that the state is underdeveloped despite huge amount of money being generated by the government.
The state government had proposed N1.758t fiscal budget for 2022, which is the biggest ever appropriation by the state. The government is also bracing itself for the task of generating massive IGR to fund the budget amid multiple taxes and levies on businesses.
Since the beginning of the current political dispensation, one party has been controlling the state. The Alliance for Democracy (AD) was the platform under which Asiwaju Bola Tinubu was elected in 1999. It was later metamorphosed into Action Congress (AC), then to Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) before it merged with some parties to formed All Progressives Congress (APC) in 2014.
The major opposition, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has been trying its luck to take over the state from the ruling party but this is yet to be materialized.
In the same vein, there has been clamour in some quarters that a new party that fields a credible and reliable candidate in the 2023 general election should be tried since both APC and PDP have failed Nigerians.
On Tuesday, March 22, an accomplished technocrat, a son of the soil, Funso Doherty, declared his intention to run for Lagos governor on the platform of the African Democratic Congress (ADC).
He said he strongly believes that Lagos needs somebody who would reform the public service, free up resources that can be re-directed in the enlightened public interest to enable the state to do more in many areas.
Doherty had said: “If I become the next governor of Lagos, my focus would be on reducing the burden of tax and regulatory harassment on small enterprises, improving the ease of starting and doing business, delivering innovative traffic, power and broadband solutions, investing in primary, maternal, child and mental health, rebuilding quality in education, including qualitative vocational options, safety net programs especially for children, the elderly and disabled.”
It is believed that with his master plans, experience and love of the masses, Lagos would be taken to the greater height in the next four years.
This agitation for a new party to take over the state gave rise to the people demanding for the man who has integrity, vision and technical knowhow to redeem the state from the shackles of poverty and hopelessness.
The people are willing to give credence to Funso Doherty because of his achievements in the private sector.
Why do Lagosian need Funso Doherty?
Funso Doherty is an accomplished Professional with a distinguished record spanning more than 25 years.
He most recently served as the Managing Director and CEO of Pensions Alliance Limited (PAL Pensions), one of Nigeria’s foremost Pension Fund Managers where he led a nationwide team overseeing a large portfolio of assets, concluding his tenure in March 2022.
He was previously Managing Director of ValuAlliance Asset Management Ltd, a member of the African Capital Alliance (ACA) Group.
Previously, Funso had served as the Pioneer Managing Director and CEO of ARM Pension Managers, which he led from its inception to become one of Nigeria’s most successful Pension Fund Administrators.
During that period, he was elected pioneer chairman of the Pension Fund Operators Association (PENOP) the umbrella body of all licensed Pension Fund Managers and Custodians in Nigeria.
In his extensive prior experience spanning over two decades, Funso has held a number of positions in leading foreign and local firms including Goldman Sachs & Company and PNC Advisors in the United States of America and ARM in Nigeria. He started his career in the Lagos office of the Assurance and Business Advisory practice of Arthur Andersen (now KPMG).
Funso holds a Masters in Business Administration (MBA) from Harvard University and a B. Sc. in Accounting from the University of Lagos.
He is a co-founding Trustee of the CFA Society Nigeria and a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria.
Finally, it is time for Lagosians to make an informed decision to elect Funso Doherty, who is credible, trusted and dependable. He has not only the fear of God but also the interest of the masses at heart.
Funso Doherty is a man who is dogged, tactful, vibrant, selfless and relentless towards serving mankind.
These are proofs that he is the man who Lagosians need to liberate them from the ruling party and take their destiny into their hands. God bless Lagos!
Lawal, a public affairs analyst sent this piece from Lagos