Don’t call me “Your Excellency” – Babajide Sanwo-Olu, Lagos State Governor

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Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu.
From AISHA RABO, Abuja

The Governor of Lagos State, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, on Wednesday announced that he should no longer be addressed to as ‘His Excellency.’

In a statement the Governor personally signed and made available to Neptune Prime, he noted that only God should bear such titles.

He said that as a Governor, he is only a servant appointed by the people and as such should be called “Mr. Governor.”

He explained, “In the last five months that I have been privileged to exercise the mandate freely given to me by the great and hardworking people of Lagos State, it has come to my consciousness to review certain features of citizen-government relations which impede the genuine expression of the democratic spirit of our society and the meaningful exercise of the sovereignty of our people.

“The office of the Governor has been celebrated as the paragon of excellence, a temple of perfection and a throne of purity.

“This demi-god mystique spreads over the entire machinery of the executive arm of the government, symbolising an authoritarian disposition on the governed.

“It has deformed the orientation of elected and appointed persons who are paid from the taxes of the people to see themselves as oppressors who can do no wrong and must be served, rather than serve the people.

“Whatever might have been the reason for this myth, let us be honest, the office is occupied by a mortal who has been called upon to serve the electorate with humility – and sincerity. The office of Governor is a public trust that calls for sacrifice, modesty and willingness to add value to the lives of the people.

“Fellow Lagosians, I have come to the conclusion that for us to change the narrative of governance, we have to strike down this seeming symbol of executive arrogance that commands popular obeisance and undermines the democratic role of citizens as the masters of those they have elected and appointed to serve.

“It is a conviction that I believe will send the right signals to all politicians and civil servants that service to the people has brought us here. It is the duty we are obliged to do. It is the responsibility that we bear wherever we find ourselves; whenever we are called to serve”.

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