Oyo State governor, Mr Seyi Makinde, on Wednesday, justified the decision of the state executive council to raise N100 billion bond among other loans as one aimed at addressing the huge infrastructural deficits in the state.

Noting that taking loans were critical to developing key infrastructure, Makinde said he did not want to have the same story as the immediate past administration of Senator Abiola Ajimobi that did not fix more than 40 kilometres of roads.

Speaking during the signing into law of the reviewed 2020 budget of N174 billion, at government house, Ibadan, Makinde explained that his administration was out for massive investment in priority capital projects to expand the state’s economy.

Though he described the N100 billion bond as ambitious, Makinde blasted the governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Chief Adebayo Adelabu and other critics of the decision to take the bond as largely borne out of mischief, opposition politicking and misinformation.

He explained that the alternative funding strategy adopted for projects like the 21 kilometres Airport – Ajia – New Ife Express Road with a spur to Amuloko in Ibadan was such that the contractor will fund the project while the state will repay over a long period of time.

He also described the 50 kilometres Iseyin-Ogbomoso road and the Ibadan Circular Road, the Ibadan Dry Port and rail corridor and upgrading the Ibadan Airport as strategic towards attracting investments and boosting the state’s Internally Generated Revenue (IGR).

On comparisons between the Airport Road and the Moniya-Iseyin road in terms of the number of kilometres against cost, he noted that the Airport road was unique because it will contain hydraulic structures.

“People may just want to be mischievous by putting out wrong information. If they are in doubt and want information about what we are doing, they should come forward and we will explain to them

“We don’t really think it is good politics to misinform the public. If they want to compete and take over from this administration, they should try and bring out ideas on how they can do things better. I am glad our people know facts from fallacy

“The facts before us are clear. Our state has huge infrastructural deficits. If those deficits are not addressed, it means we will be maintaining the status quo. Any person with sound financial knowledge will tell you that the only way to get out of this cycle of poverty is through massive investment in infrastructure

“As I have always said, the problem with loans is not in taking them, but in the way, loans are utilised. Oyo State cannot get out of its infrastructural deficit without taking loans targeted at developing key infrastructure

“I have seen some comments about the cost of the Airport Road. There is no basis for the comparison between Airport Road and the Moniya-Iseyin road. Unlike the Moniya-Iseyin road, the Airport road will contain hydraulic structures

“Let me use this opportunity to talk about the N100 Billion bond, also known as the Oyo Prosperity Bond, which was recently proposed and approved by the Oyo State Executive Council. There is no arguing that floating this bond is an ambitious move. But I want to believe that we were voted into office to take bold steps in developing our economy. The facts before us are clear. Our state has huge infrastructural deficits. If those deficits are not addressed, it means we will be maintaining the status quo. Any person with sound financial knowledge will tell you that the only way to get out of this cycle of poverty is through massive investment in infrastructure

“I make bold to say that in eight years, all the roads constructed, expanded are not up to 40 kilometres. We don’t want the same story at the end of the tenure of this administration

“As I have always said, the problem with loans is not in taking them, but in the way, loans are utilised. Oyo State cannot get out of its infrastructural deficit without taking loans targeted at developing key infrastructure. For example, we are targeting economically strategic roads such as the fifty-kilometres Iseyin-Ogbomoso road and the Ibadan Circular Road. We are also giving attention to the health sector by either constructing or upgrading one public hospital in each of the three senatorial districts of the state. In the transport sector, we are focused on building the Ibadan Dry Port and rail corridor and upgrading the Ibadan Airport

“Oyo State cannot attract investments into our economy without showing that we are worthy of these investments. Investors will go to Lagos and even our neighbouring Ogun State if we continue running our economy with the same level of unseriousness that the state has come to be known for. Tell me, what excuse do we have for not making it into the list of top ten economies in Nigeria? This used to be the regional capital. How can we, despite being in these dire conditions, not recognize the urgency of growing our economy?

“Somebody that contested an election was rejected by the people, claimed to have had a First class in Finance and couldn’t discern the very simple thing about taking a bond. The bond is supposed to be paid over a period of about 30 years. If taking a bond can grow your IGR by N1billion monthly, you even pay it off within a very short period of time, even shorter than the 30 years that the bond is usually made out for. So, he should stop playing destructive politics. Yes, we want to be criticized but constructively and bring alternatives to the table

“I took an oath to lift Oyo State from poverty to prosperity using our Roadmap to Accelerated Development of Oyo State 2019-2023. I am determined to keep my word. Every step we have taken as an administration since our being sworn in on May 29, 2019, till date is geared towards ensuring that every promise made will translate to promises kept. I pledge to continue carrying you along as we make the best decisions for the overall good of the people of Oyo State,” Makinde said.

Google search engine
Previous articleEid-Celebration: Oyo NSCDC Deploys 2300 Men
Next articleDapo Lam Meets Party Leaders, Distributes Cash, Food Items

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here