By Timothy Agbor, Osogbo
Pleased by the successful resolution of the labour crises in Osun state, hoteliers in the state have urged the state governor, Mr. Rauf Aregbesola not to be discouraged by his critics.
Expressing displeasure over the recent criticism that has trailed the inability of the Aregbesola administration to pay its workers their salaries, the hoteliers said issues relating to inability of government to pay salaries were not peculiar to the state alone.
The group, Hoteliers in Osun, in a statement signed by its spokesperson, Babatunde Karim, copies of which were made available to newsmen in Osogbo on Wednesday, 23rd September, 2015 asked governor Aregbesola not to be deterred by the financial challenges facing the state but to continue to be strong to steer its ship to haven of financial prosperity.
It also claimed since nearly all states in the federation are affected by the dwindling resources that has led to their inability to fulfill some of their financial obligations, then political interpretations should not be given to the recently resolved government, labour crises in the state.
The hoteliers thus urged Governor Aregbesola to expedite action in settling hotels bills his administration incurred from last year to March this year to enable them remain in business.
The group said: “Many hotels are retrenching because of huge amount owed them by government. Some could no longer cope and have dropped out of business. We urge him to please pay us the money to prevent total collapse of the sector”.
While it called for change of strategy in managing affairs of the state, the group added that it remained dangerous for elements seeking to hijack soul of Osun to be given opportunity to latch on to the precarious situation it has found itself, to cause disharmony between government and the people.
It then implored the administration of Governor Aregbesola to pay more urgent attention to the plight of hospitality business owners in Osun, stressing that many hotels in Osogbo are finding it difficult to remain in business due to indebtedness to them by individuals and agencies.
“We are gasping for breath now and business has slowed down owing to poor patronage and indebtedness to many hotels in Osogbo. We remain a strong supporter of the administration of Ogbeni Aregbesola and hope he will take us into consideration while taking critical decision on how to stabilize private businesses in the state.
“It is pertinent to note here that all policies and programmes of Aregbesola administration in the tourism and hospitality sector in the state, have impacted positively on our business but we urge him to take urgent steps to further protect our investments from crumbling by paying promptly for the services we have rendered”, the statement concluded.