Failure can be excused if there really was no chance to succeed, but doubly unfortunate is the man who fails even when faced with an obvious road to the metaphorical land flowing with milk and honey. Never mind that sometimes the roots of success look and feel like dead twigs, the governor of Ondo State, Barrister Rotimi Akeredolu is not a man to let go of opportunities just because the means might feel unpalatable to the conservative crowd.
Where many see a deadly weed and intoxicant that cause social problems for the youth, Akeredolu sees a pathway towards boosting the internally generated revenue of the Sunshine State. As the hotbed of cannabis cultivation, Ondo is primed to tap into the fast-growing market for legal marijuana and the hard-working governor is not about to let the opportunity pass the state by.
To this end, he has begun consultations with stakeholders both at the federal and state levels to put machinery in place to begin cultivation of marijuana. The project is envisioned to be modulated and strictly controlled to prevent abuse. It will be undertaken in partnership with the federal government and the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) who will provide strict monitoring of the harvests to ensure it doesn’t fall into the wrong hands.
The legal marijuana market has experienced an exponential boom in recent times following studies that have proved the multiple medical benefits of controlled marijuana use. Experts forecast the industry will be worth up to $145 billion by 2025. Little wonder Akeredolu is in a hurry to kick-start the state’s participation so as to establish a foothold before the market inevitably becomes saturated.
“We all know that Ondo State is the hotbed of cannabis cultivation in Nigeria. We know how to grow it and it thrives well in the Sunshine State… We would be shortchanging ourselves if we failed to tap into the Legal Marijuana Market,” he explained.