Not less than N36billion is spent annually on putting parties together by residents of Lagos State, while another 14.4 billion is spent on aso-ebi , bringing the total money spent on parties to N50.4 billion.
Governor Babatunde Fashola made the remarks while speaking at the 4th edition of the Lagos Ignite Enterprise and Employability project, a joint youth empowerment programme between the government and the Afterschool Graduate Development Centre (AGDC).
Fashola said the figure was collated after a careful study of the lifestyle of people resident in the state. He called on youths to tap into opportunities for investment in providing goods and services. He said a study of nightlife carried out by the governments in five local governments including Agege, Mushin, Ifako-Ijaiye and Ikeja showed that about N3billion was spent on 1555 parties held at a specific period of time.
“We did a study between October and November last year, we took just five local governments in Lagos; Agege, Mushin, Ifako-Ijaiye, Ikeja and another one,. We studied from Thursday, Friday and Saturday night, three days every week for four weeks which was 12 nights”.
“In 12 nights, 1555 parties were held in those local governments, in terms of drinks, food and all other engagements during such parties, about N1.2billion was spent and when we dis-aggregated them we saw how much went to DJ, MC, food and drinks, the total picture in the state now and I don’t want to give you a wrong number but it is something in the region of about N3billion monthly on that side of our life and people are playing and impacting on that side of our economy”.
Fashola explained that aso-ebi materials often put on to add colours to such events gulped at least N1.2billion monthly, saying the market is huge with much yet to be tapped from the market.He called on the youths to look beyond white collar jobs.
“Some people have become very smart. They saw the money in refuse, they are PSP operators today who employ people, who own trucks, who have relationship with banks, borrow money to buy trucks and employ people and from just carting away refuse, but some of us say refuse is dirty but they would tell you another story. Now that was a cultural problem; the way we chose to manage our refuse, to do it differently, that is what the Europeans have done differently that market is still very big, bigger than my hands can measure, if you can envision it, you can do it.
“The possibilities in the Nigerian market have not yet been fully exploited. It is for you to decide whether you want to get your hands dirty like late Otunba Gadaffi of DMT toilets, or you want to sit in your house and tell yourself that well, you have just finished school, and you don’t want to rumple your tie and you’re looking for a job. So the reason we am here is that the solution to unemployment in Nigeria is in three simple words; Made in Nigeria”, the governor said.