Lagos State was yesterday admitted into the fold of owners of Odu’a Investments Company Limited.
Odu’a Group is the investments business group of the five Southwest states of Osun, Oyo, Ondo, Ogun and Ekiti.
The decision ended four years of debates among the previous five owner-states over consideration that Lagos State should be admitted into the fold because it is a Yoruba state like the others.
The announcement was made yesterday after a marathon meeting of governors of the five states at the Cocoa House, Ibadan headquarters of the conglomerate.
At the meeting were Governors Rauf Aregbesola (Osun); Ibikunle Amosun (Ogun); Olusegun Mimiko (Ondo); Oyo State Deputy Governor Moses Alake-Adeyemo and his Ekiti State counterpart Olusola Kolapo.
Mimiko, who read the communiqué after the meeting, said the governors and board members took far-reaching decisions at the meeting- two most important of which were the approval of a five-year strategic plan for raise the company’s revenue from its current N4 billion to N20 billion and agreement to admit Lagos as the sixth owner-state.
Mimiko said: “We took some far-reaching decisions. We have taken the decision to reposition Odu’a Investment as the engine room of economic growth and development of the Southwest. We have just approved a five-year strategic plan to grow the revenue base of the company from N4billion to N20billion by 2019.
“We have also agreed in principle to admit Lagos State as part of the Odu’a Group. Based on this renewed interest in Odu’a Group, as the engine room of the economic growth in the Southwest, as governors and proprietors, we have also decided that we will now meet with the board and management quarterly.”
The Ondo governor also emphasised the determination of owner-states to reposition the conglomerate because of its strategic advantage to drive economic growth in the Southwest.
The Chairman, Board of Directors, Chief Isaac Akintade, reminded the governor’s of the payment of N167 million dividend to the five states last October as part of the first major steps in repositioning the company. The payment came after a six-year drought in dividend payment.
Akintade said the five-year strategic growth plan was generated with inputs from shareholders, stressing that the board and management of the company was committed to the plan.
Also at the meeting were Secretaries to the State Government (SSGs) of the five states.
Source: The Nation Nigeria