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Olumilua will be remembered for enlisting Ondo as oil-producing state, says Fayemi

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Fayemi

The Ekiti State governor, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, has said that the late former governor of old Ondo State, Evangelist Bamidele Olumilua, will be remembered for fighting for the enlistment of Ondo as an oil-producing state while he was the governor.

He stated this during a commendation service held for deceased in Ado-Ekiti yesterday.

Fayemi said the outstanding political will and courageous action taken by Olumilua while presiding as a governor of old Ondo State between 1992 and 1993 led to revenue breakthrough of the current Ondo State, thus ensuring infrastructural face-lifting for the neighbouring state today.

Olumilua, an indigene of Ikere-Ekiti, who was the governor of old Ondo State between 1992 and 1993, died on June 4, 2020, at the age of 80.

The old Ondo comprised the present Ondo and Ekiti states before the latter was carved out by the military regime of Gen. Sanni Abacha in 1996.

He said: “One important legacy of the administration of Evangelist Olumilua as a governor was the eventual enlistment of Ondo State as an oil producing state.

“He worked relentlessly to actualise this. He also facilitated the establishment of the Oil Minerals Producing and Development Commission (OMPADEC) in 1992.

“He had a star-studded team and in fact, his then Attorney-General, Chief Wole Olanipekun (SAN), practically drafted the bill that established the commission. He worked hard to get the commission, which has now been replaced with the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC).

“When the first tranche of N250 million accrued to the state as an oil producing state, Evangelist Olumilua insisted the money must be put in a dedicated account to pursue his dream of modern urbanisation project of some towns in the then Ondo State.

“His thought was for the state to be economically competitive, because some towns needed to be deliberately transformed into modern cities where people could work, stay and enjoy their lives.”

Fayemi said Olumilua was a detrabilised leader, saying not even agitation for the creation of Ekiti by his kinsmen could sway him as a sitting governor, which he said, some misinterpreted to mean an act of betrayal of trust.

In his short sermon, Pastor Ola Omoseebi said Olumilua taught a lesson of how leaders could shun materialism, arrogance and corruption, which are the bane of leadership in this country with his Spartan and disciplined nature.


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