The Lagos State Governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode, has advised the Federal Government to allow state governments to develop the natural resources within their domains in order to create the necessary infrastructure that will attract investors.
According to him, the Federal Government has a critical role to play in addressing the fundamental structural challenges undermining sustainable and inclusive economic growth in the various states.
Ambode spoke in Kaduna at the 4th Progressive Governance Lecture Series organised by Governors of the All Progressives Congress with the theme: ‘Building The Economy of States: Challenge of Developing Inclusively Sustainable Growth’.
He said: “Governors are the owners of the land in their states but underneath the land and even inside the water, the Federal Government is structured in a way that it controls the potential. In a situation where the states are being spoon-fed, because I call the federation account more or less like spoon-feeding.
“The Federal Government collects a total revenue on Value Added Tax and various revenues on behalf of all of us and make us to come to Abuja and more or less share it to us as peanuts, thereby not allowing us to reach our potential as competitive states individually.”
He said further: “There is just one economy in this country and so we need to first of all accept the fact that there is nothing like private sector as against the public sector; there is nothing like the Federal Government as against state governments.
“We are collaborating to drive the economy of this country. So, if that describes what Nigeria is and what it ought to be, we also want to say that government should be seen as an enabler, a platform that more or less creates the enabling environment for the public sector to thrive.”