Odu’a partners ABUAD on establishment of N12 billion industrial park
The Odu’a Group of Companies has entered into a joint venture partnership with Afe Babalola University, Ado Ekiti (ABUAD), to establish an industrial park values at N12billion on the 12,000 Square meters where the moribund textile industry in Ado Ekiti was located.
Under the terms, the partners plan to establish 31 industries, a vocational and skills centre as well as academic centre, where diploma in three engineering courses and Advanced level certificates would be taught.
Speaking at the formal presentation of the project design for effective utilisation of the of the old Odu’a Textile Mills, ABUAD’ founder, Chief Afe Babalola, said Britain had predicted that Nigeria, Brazil, and India were to join the developed nations, but regretted that while the other two have become part of the developed world, the country is still a developing nation.
Babalola said the military regimes destroyed Odu’a legacies, adding that the efforts of the late sage, Chief Obafemi Awolowo, to make the South-West an industrial hub was dealt a deadly blow by the soldiers.
He said each of the industry is valued at N500million, saying that N12billion would be spent to activate the Industrial Park, adding that the raw materials needed for the industries are available at ABUAD.
“We shouldn’t allow such textile mills that were the hub of Ekiti economy to die. But with this plan, the factory will bounce to life by becoming an employment generation, vocational and academic centres, where people can benefit,” he added.
The Group Managing Director, Odu’a Conglomerate, Adewale Raji, said the factory was converted into a skilled and vocational centre under the regime of Governor Kayode Fayemi, saying the module adopted then could not sustain the centre as a veritable training ground for graduates and artisans.
He said the assets wasting away at the textile industry are valued at N1billion by experts, describing the scenario as dangerous to the survival of the Southwest region’s economy.
Raji said a sum of N200million was expended at that time for the construction of builder mart, comprising 50 lock-up shops and the vocational centre, which are no longer economically sustainable.
“In this partnership, ABUAD is 60 per cent shareholder, while Odu’a has 40 per cent. We are very optimistic about the sustainability of the centre. It is our hope that within a short period, we will develop a reputation for excellence through the giant strides and accomplishment of its graduates and the industrial products of the proposed industrial park.
“We shared the vision of three-in-one technical and vocational centre, entry level certificate and diploma awarding engineering centre and mini industrial park as contained in the proposal.
“The objectives of the two partners are geared toward transforming the assets for economic and social gains and for it to become training grounds for future entrepreneurs that will be job creators,” he said.
The Directo, ABUAD Directorate of Technological Development, Prof Adeyemi Aderoba, said with the realisation of the proposal, the hitherto moribund factory will offer training in 12 courses, which would bear the semblance of a technical college.
Aderoba added that the industrial park will contain 31 small scale industries with materials for most of them already produced at ABUAD.
The industries being contemplated include textile, Cassava processing, wood processing, automotive, paint, Food processing, and a host of others.
In the area of skills acquisition, the centre will focus on fabrication, mechanic, carpentry, computer study, and many others.