Lawmakers Back Fayemi over Proposed Privatisation of Ekiti’s Businesses

Kayode Fayemi

Victor Ogunje in Ado Ekiti

The Ekiti State House of Assembly has thrown its weight behind Governor Kayode Fayemi over his intention to hand over state tourism and other
businesses to private companies for better management.

This came to the fore as the Alara of Aramoko Ekiti, Oba Olu Adegoke, called on the federal government to invest heavily in the promotion
of cultural values of Nigerians to promote tourism and hospitality businesses in the country.

Oba Adegoke said Nigeria is vastly rich in culture and other natural endowments that can transform the economy, urging President Muhammadu Buhari to include the sector in its diversification process to complement the development in agriculture and solid mineral sectors.

Speaking on Saturday during the 2018 Aramoko Heritage Festival (ARAHFEST) in Aramoko Ekiti in Ekiti West Local Government, the Assembly’s Deputy Speaker, Segun Adewumi, said the House won’t hesitate to take actions that would complement Fayemi’s efforts to make Ekiti the hub of tourism in the country.

Adewumi said his constituency, Ekiti West constituency II, remains the nerve centre of tourism in the state, adding that handing over the Ikogosi Warm Spring, Arinta Waterfall in Ipole Iloro and other monuments to private companies would help in rejuvenating the sector and making it to contribute to the development of the state.

The deputy speaker added that other ailing companies like the Fountain Hotels, Ire Burnt Brick, ROMACO granite company and the Ekiti Parapo Pavilion had been badly managed under the immediate past government, saying the House is ready to back Fayemi with legislative action to enhance their smooth running.

“Ekiti has one of the best but untapped tourism potentials in the country. I share the view that government has no business in business,
all it needs to do is make the environment conducive for private bodies to run them and make profit for the state.

“Like Ikogosi Warm Spring, Arinta Waterfall and other tourist resorts in Ekiti, what we need to do is to provide good roads, electricity and water as well as security and allow private companies to run them. We saw what Ekiti was getting when Governor Fayemi was in the saddle and we knew what we got under the last government.

“So, the Assembly is ready to give the proposal legislative action to make our IGR to move up and make lives better for our people,” Adewumi

Oba Adegoke expressed regret over the increasing youth unemployment in the country, saying the ARAHFEST was mooted as part of the ways to engage the youths constructively and make hem showcase their potentials.

“Our youths should not only take their education serious, they should acquire skills that can make them relevant in our society. During this
programme, we have been able to identify those youths with special skills and we are creating awareness for them. This festival is not only to promote our cultural heritage, but to make our people have economic values that can transform their lives,” he said.

The President of Aramoko Development Association (ADA) , Dr. Dipo Aladeloye and ARAHFEST’s Director General, Prof Ojo Bakare, said the essence of the celebration is to activate the capacity of the community for entrepreneurial activities and economic empowerment in the culture and tourism sectors.

They said the programme is also geared towards encouraging economic and business growth in the town and neighbouring communities.