Odu’a Investment reaffirms commitment to corporate governance, investors
…dismisses allegations of malpractices
The board and management of Odu’a Investment Company Limited, has dismissed allegations of violation of corporate governance levelled against it, noting that the group remains committed to the survival of the entity and enhancing investors’ return on investments.
According to the Chairman of the company’s board, Segun Ojo, the firm has been on the path of repositioning the conglomerate despite lingering economic challenges and has never violated corporate governance ethics as being alleged by a former director of the group.
Reacting to a publication in the media where the immediate past chairman of the company, Dr Isaac Akintade, whose nomination as a director was withdrawn by the Ondo State Government, Ojo said the allegations made in the publication are false and seek to discredit the company.
He said: “It is highly unfortunate that a former Chairman of ODU’A who served for over seven years (i.e. four years as Director and over three years as Chairman) had to go through the pages of a Newspaper to present incorrect and inaccurate position on what happened in the organisation with the intent of discrediting the company, which was beginning to gain recognition and reputation after so many years of inactivity and financial stagnation.
“The Board of Directors of ODU’A Group is responsible and accountable to the Owner States Governors as trustees of this great heritage on behalf of the good people of South West Nigeria. It is with this knowledge and high sense of responsibility and purpose coupled with the confidence reposed in us that we carry out the grave assignment of superintending the Group.”
Indeed, some of the allegations border on the withdrawal of Akintade as chairman of Odu’a, approval for the payment of N65million toPricewaterhouseCoopers(PwC), the group’s anniversary celebrations, appointments of personal assistant, consultants, and Group Managing Director, performance of companies under the group, financial losses and projections among other projects.
Justifying some of the actions taken during the period, Ojo said: “Our owner states governors approved a strategic plan in January 2016, though the Board approved it a year earlier. Initial efforts to recruit strategic talent to jump-start the actualisation of this plan in 2015 were frustrated by Chief Akintade and Otunba Ogunkeyede. The non-appointment of these critical personnel required to drive this target has slowed down effort towards the achievement of the forecast. Concern showed by the Board recently in this respect has resulted in fresh impetus to fill these critical vacancies through KPMG recruitment support.”
Appraising the performance of the company hitherto his assumption of office, Ojo described the financial performance of Odu’a Group between 2009 and 2013, as comatose, with revenue growth of three per cent and profit before tax decline of -36 per cent.
He noted that there are ongoing efforts to address the challenges facing the company, adding that corporate governance ethics are not being violated by the board in the process of reviving the ailing firm.
“In the last two years, the Board and Management had been involved in discussions and negotiations with credible investors, whom we believe would help in repositioning the conglomerate. The economic recession affected the consummation of some of these projects but ODU’A is definitely on the path to recovery and we will surely deliver on our object,” Ojo explained.