Nigerian government on Thursday formally handed over the Presidential Lodge, Marina, to Lagos State Government.
Permanent Secretary, State House, Abuja, Jalal Arabi, led a federal government delegation to hand over the edifice built to commemorate the nation’s Independence in 1960.
Arabi, while signing the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), said: “History is being rewritten with this handing over. Although the state House Marina is being seeded to Lagos State government but we are not losing the fact that it has gone to the right hand.
“Most of us have been involved in keeping this place and we never wanted any distraction. There is difference between old age and statesmanship. I believe we are now in an era where we have a principal, who believes that your words should be your bonds.
“Every parent feels the pains when giving out their daughter in marriage. They would have felt that they made an investment on the daughter and held on to her, but the pleasant thing is that they will be more elated when they realize the husband is worthwhile.
“This is a clear analogy of how we felt when realised that the state House will be ceded to Lagos.”
Secretary to the State Government, Tunji Bello, who received the document, said the development signposts an affirmation of the healthy inter-governmental relations between the federal and the state government.
He assured that the property would be well preserved, adding that the government will ensure its transformation without compromising its structural integrity and preserving its architectural finesse and beauty.
“The successful handover of this structure which represent one of the landmarks of the city of Lagos is an eloquent testimony to the new dawn of politics of tolerance and inclusiveness which the All Progressive Congress (APC) has brought to Nigerian landscape.
“We will ensure that the edifice becomes a tourist destination which residents of Lagos in particular and Nigerians in general would not only be proud of but which compares to similar ones in distant destination,” he said.