Gov. Akinwumi Ambode of Lagos State says he is committed to the integration of the South West Zone.
Ambode said this on Thursday in Osogbo when he paid a courtesy call on his Osun counterpart, Rauf Aregbesola.
The governor said it was time for the region to fully exploit its potentials by backing the cause Aregbesola had been championing since the beginning of his administration.
He said the time was right for all well meaning indigenes to cooperate and ensure that the region began to rely on its economic endowments.
“We have an historic duty to join Aregbesola in championing what he has been clamouring for; the integration of the South West.
“I fully commit myself to the integration of the South West because I believe it is the only way the region can fully explore its potentials for the benefit of all.
“I can assure you that the South West has all it takes to stand alone and survive without having to depend on any external means of funding,’’ he said.
Ambode also commended Aregbesola’s developmental projects in the state.
`We are in consonance with what Aregbesola is doing in Osun. I cannot begin to define how Osun has developed under this administration.
“I am particularly amazed by commitment to developing the state despite the tough economic challenges the state is passing through.
“I want to assure you that Lagos State Government will continue to support Osun till the end with all it can,’’ Ambode said.
In his remarks, Aregbesola said that the call for regional integration of the region must be taken beyond mere rhetoric.
Aregbesola said that all the South West governors must work toward actualising integration before the end of their current tenure.
“There can be no meaningful development in the South West without the integration of the region.
“It is the only way we can fully take advantage of the comparative competitiveness that exists in our region.
“That is why we commend the efforts of the Lagos State Government on the move for regional integration,’’ Aregbesola said.