Untold Story Of How Senator Amosun’s Alleged Greed Upturned Ogun Economic Prospects
OpenLife Nigeria reports that as the world literally stood still yesterday, Monday, May 22, 2023 at the commissioning of world largest single train refinery in Ibeju Lekki area of Lagos, some citizens in neighbouring Ogun State were lamenting, regretting ever having Senator Ibikunle Amosun who presided over the State between 2011 and 2019 as executive governor.
According to the story, the newly commissioned daily 650,000 barrel processing Dangote refinery which would employ over 100,000 Nigerian youths and generate over $21 billion in revenue, was naturally planned to be established in the Ijebu water side of Ogun State, a development that would have ushered economic rebound to the gateway State.
But Amosun’s alleged greed and poor business insights denied the State the opportunity.
A top civil servant in the Ogun State civil service who spoke to OpenLife Monday night said:
The genesis of the Olokola FTZ started during former governor Segun Osoba’s tenure between 1999 and 2003.
Osoba could not scale through the 2003 governorship election and Gbenga Daniel came in. Daniel saw the prospects in the initiative and finalised it.
But Amosun and his boys threw it away,” he lamented.
Continuing, the civil servant who preferred to be anonymous because of regulation added:
First, they said Ogun gave him too much free land. Therefore, he should come and pay. He was willing to pay, then they said, he should give the state govt a stake in the project and he objected saying his business model doesn’t allow minority stakeholder. They Ogun commissioners then embargoed the project. At the time, he had taken the loan from the Paris bank and the interest was counting. The delayed him for more than two years, hoping he would capitulate. At the last moment when he wanted to return the loan and pay off the interest, Fashola heard about it and offered him LFTZ free.
“We regret having Amosun. He has committed sins that are unforgettable and unforgivable. Generations yet unborn will not forgive Amosun for this lost opportunity,” he lamented.
It would be recalled that at the commissioning on Monday, President Muhammadu Buhari expressed optimism, saying the refinery will save the country huge forex that would have been spent on fuel importation.
Aliko Dangote, the chairman of the company disclosed that the first products from the refinery would hit the market towards the end of July this year, adding that the refinery currently has over 33,000 employees.
The billionaire businessman said the project was the realisation of a “clear opportunity” for Nigeria, citing the African Union’s commitment to the creation of an African common market through the African Continental Free Trade Area, AfCFTA.
The facility is expected to produce Premium Motor Spirit (petrol), diesel (Automotive Gas Oil), aviation jet fuel and Dual-Purpose Kerosene (DPK), among other refined products.