The Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi, has acquired 30 square miles of land in Ile Ife for cocoa, oil palm and rubber plantation.
The monarch stated that the agricultural investment would create jobs for no fewer than 40,000 youths, adding that this move would further reduce crime rate in Ile Ife and the state.
Ogunwusi, who said this in a statement made available to our correspondent in Osogbo by the Director, Media and Public Affairs of Ooni’s Palace, Mr. Moses Olafare, said he would dedicate the year 2016 to youth development.
This project, Olafare explained, was apart from the resort being built by the monarch where about 3,000 youths were currently engaged.
The statement read, “Kabiyesi has dedicated the new year 2016 to turn around the fortunes of the youth by unfolding a new vista of hope in terms of gainful employment. Already, no fewer than 3,000 youths are engaged at ongoing project site of Ife Grand Resort, spanning over 1000 acres of land established by the monarch to provide job opportunities for the people.
“Specifically, the targets of Ooni Ogunwusi are beyond the shores of Ile Ife and critical arrangements have reached the advanced stage to take the unemployed youths off the streets, with a view to checking the growing crime rate in our society.
“To achieve this feat, 30 square miles of land had been acquired at Ife reserve to drive massive agricultural revolution which would pave the way for cocoa, oil palm and rubber plantation. This scheme would create job opportunities for no fewer than 40,000 people.”
IBEDC Disconnects UCH Over N500m Debt, Critical Services Affected
The University College Hospital (UCH) in Ibadan, Oyo State, experienced a disruption in its power supply after the Ibadan Electricity Distribution Company (IBEDC) disconnected the hospital over a debt amounting to N500 million.
Dr. Jesse Otegbayo, the Chief Medical Director of UCH, confirmed the disconnection but refrained from elaborating on the exact cause.
IBEDC’s spokesperson, Busolami Tunwase, acknowledged the outstanding debt owed by UCH but denied that the disconnection was intentional.
Tunwase stated that while UCH owed the substantial amount, the power outage was due to a technical fault in the area, coinciding with the debt situation.
Despite repeated attempts to engage UCH in discussions to settle the debt, IBEDC had resorted to disconnection as a last resort.
The disconnection poses significant challenges to UCH’s critical services, affecting patient care and hospital operations.
While IBEDC emphasized its understanding of the hospital’s importance and commitment to resolving the issue amicably, the situation underscores the financial strains faced by healthcare institutions and the essential need for reliable power supply.
Efforts to negotiate and find a resolution between UCH and IBEDC are ongoing to restore normal operations and ensure uninterrupted healthcare services.
Oil and Gas Dealers Threaten Withdrawal as 70% of Downstream Businesses Collapse
The downstream oil sector in Nigeria faces a looming crisis as oil and gas dealers, represented by the Natural Oil and Gas Suppliers Association of Nigeria (NOGASA), issue a stern warning of potential service withdrawal.
In a recent resolution following their executive committee meeting in Abuja, NOGASA expressed grave concerns over the collapse of approximately 70% of businesses in the industry due to the harsh operating environment.
President of NOGASA, Benneth Korie, highlighted the dire situation, emphasizing the challenges faced by oil marketers in funding operations amidst soaring bank interest rates.
Korie underscored the overwhelming burden faced by operators who are compelled to acquire funds at exorbitant interest rates upwards of 30%, exacerbating financial strain and hindering business viability.
The primary demand voiced by NOGASA is the pegging of the foreign exchange rate at N750/$ to facilitate refinery operations and stimulate the production of refined products domestically.
Failure to address these pressing issues, Korie warned, could result in the withdrawal of services by NOGASA’s over 200 members starting from the next month.
The downstream oil crisis coincides with heightened anticipation for the release of refined petroleum products from the Dangote and Port Harcourt refineries, seen as critical for alleviating supply shortages nationwide.
However, amidst forex crises and inflationary pressures, operators in the oil and gas sector confront mounting economic challenges, necessitating urgent government intervention.
As Nigeria navigates through turbulent economic waters, stakeholders eagerly await decisive action from authorities to salvage the downstream oil sector from imminent collapse and avert potential disruptions in fuel supply chains.
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