Ogbomoso is to benefit from the plan of the state government to make agriculture sustainable in Oyo State.
Speaking at the inaugural Ogbomoso Economic and Investment Summit, Governor Seyi Makinde said the government will tap into the potential of the town.
The governor, who was represented by Mr Seyi Adeleye, Special Adviser on Infrastructure, said the noticeable revolutions in Agric business, infrastructure and industrialization should involve not just the government (Public) but also private enterprise collaborations.
He said this was necessary to improve the livelihoods of citizens, empower the youth and thereby expand the state’s economy.
The Director General of SMEDAN, Mr. Wale Fasanya, who spoke on “Rethinking Drivers of SME Capital Financing for Economic Growth’ stressed the various opportunities for SME financing and capacity development for economic growth.
In his goodwill message Prince Dapo Oyewumi, Founder/Managing Director, Centre for Law and Business/Chairman J.O.Oyewumi & Co. Nig. Ltd., said that commerce is second nature to the people of Ogbomoso who are found in all parts of the world.
He said the commercial exploits of the people of Ogbomoso in Northern Nigeria, “where even my own family has strong business roots in Jos and the West African Coast is well known, contributing in no small measure to commerce and the economy of those places. Their presence in the United States of America, United Kingdom and Europe is also notable.”
Lauding the efforts of the organisers of the economic summit, Prince Oyewumi said,, “It is gratifying that the focus has also shifted home with increased interests and businesses including large scale farms and agribusinesses, hospitality, trading amongst others, being established in Ogbomoso and its environs.”
Rear Admiral Jacob Ajani (rtd), Chairman, Governing Council Maritime Academy Of Nigeria, Oron, highlighted some security issues inimical to business development in Ogbomoso. According to him, these include the prevalence of drug abuse among youths, the menace of street urchins, kidnapping for ransom, political thuggery among others.
He called for the establishment, within six months of the summit, a framework for the establishment of a Chamber of Trade and Industry to actualise business developments in Ogbomoso.
He also advocated the need to facilitate the convening of a forum of Ogbomoso socio-cultural groups, the traditional institution, religious groups, politicians, academia and other relevant stakeholders to strategise on how to address the issues.
Mr. Emmanuel Akinwumi, CEO of Financing & Partnership Africa Limited, said in order to mitigate the problem of infrastructural deficit, tame criminality and hopelessness, create jobs and wealth in Ogbomoso land, and by extension in Oyo State and Nigeria, there was a need to embark on successful industrial clusters rooted in the private sector led and government enabled projects catalyzed through coordination and collaboration; cooperation and partnership; access to funding and technical expertise.
Earlier in his welcome address, the convener, Mr Benjamin Onigbinde, who is also the Chief Executive Officer of Sigvent Property Trust Limited, stressed the need for a quantum leap in the development of the second biggest economy in Oyo State, adding that to achieve sustainable development and drive global and local investment to the city there is a need for strategic engagement and collaboration among all stakeholders.
According to him, the community is rich in all the significant factors of production, adding that the cashew, cassava, mangoes and maize found in Ogbomoso are among the best qualities globally.
He stated that there are three basic areas of investment that the summit wants to achieve at the end of the day; the establishment of a special agric-industrial processing zone and to attract investors to establish private universities and establishment of a cashew processing plant.
Among those who attended the summit are a foremost entrepreneur and former Executive Member of the Manufacturing Association of Nigeria (MAN) Mr Jonathan Onigbinde of the Onigbinde Group of Companies who called for more participation of Investors in Ogbomoso Economic Development.
Another phase to be organized is what the organizer tagged Ogbomoso Investment Road Show, to hold in Abuja and Lagos in 2023.