A statement signed by the Chief Press Secretary to the governor, Mr. Taiwo Adisa, quoted as saying this at the official flag-off of the Agribusiness Industrial Hub at Fashola in Oyo.
According to him, his administration is determined to expand the state’s economy, stressing that “our decision was based on the available data and a little bit of common sense.”
“When we came into government, we were determined to rebuild the economy of Oyo State. We chose to use our areas of comparative advantage and competitive advantage to drive the growth and this is what dictated our choice of agribusiness as one of the drivers.
“On our way here, I saw the old houses that were refurbished around 2009 or 2010, during former Governor Akala’s administration. From the available records to me, it was the Paris Club refund that was spent on the building and it was a lot of money in billions but it did not deliver the desired result.
“The houses are there though little out of them were refurbished. Is there electricity? How about the road from Oyo to Iseyin? And who are the people that are living in the building today? No records. So, we set up and gave life to a new agency, the Oyo State Agribusiness Development Agency (OYSADA).
The governor said: “Yesterday, we commissioned the Moniya-Iseyin road. We had thought the same contractor would just turn his equipment and face Oyo. They went through the process truly. We engaged the contractor and he gave us a bill of either N11bn or N13bn and I said no because we did 65km for about N9.9bn but this is about 35km or a maximum of 40km. I was expecting a figure around N8bn. So, I said they should throw it open and go and bid.
“This flag-off of the construction of Fashola business industrial hub, which we are performing today is a testament to the fact that we made the right decision. It is proof that when we say Oyo State is ready for business, we are not just mouthing meaningless words, our doors are wide open. Come in and talk to us. Share your win-win ideas with us and we will collaborate with you.
“For this project, we are working with Brains and Hammers. They are a Nigerian Real Estate company with proven capacity to execute projects at this scale. Fashola is just one of the nine farm settlements we have in Oyo State, which have been left moribund for years.
“So, this ceremony speaks to another promise we have made to the people of the state that we will ensure that we recover and extract value from all moribund government assets and abandoned projects. Quite frankly, we really do not care who started the project; maybe the colonialist or independent people or even the attempt by the 2009/2010 government.