Oyetola never made attempt to sell Osun mining licences, says aide
Media aide to immediate past Governor of Osun State, Adegboyega Oyetola, Ismail Omipidan, has described as wicked and untrue the claim by Governor Ademola Adeleke that Oyetola attempted to sell off the state mining licences before stepping aside on November 26, 2022.
Omipidan, who noted that it was Oyetola who made sense of Osun State’s assets in the mining sector through his government’s seven project streams in the Osun Minerals Development Plan, said that if not for Oyetola administration’s conscious efforts at developing the sector, Osun State would have since lost all its 17 mining licences.
Omipidan, in a statement, yesterday, said the misinformation from Governor Adeleke and his team should ordinarily not have found its way to the public space if they were sincere especially at this period when both Muslims and Christians are seeking the face of God, their Creator, asking for forgiveness and better guidance in the months ahead.
He said the current Osun State government had been looking for ways and means to cover up the governor’s obvious ineptitude, hence, the resort to cheap blackmail through misinformation.
The statement reads in part: “In just two years, the Oyetola’s administration was able to commercialise the mineral assets and executed agreements with Badger Mines and Pan Arabian Mines for the purpose of exploration. Thankfully, the Omoluabi-Badger commercial gold buying and refining centre (CBRC) Osu, was completed with the state-of-the-art refining capacity before we stepped aside last year.
“We also concluded the resource valuation of assets in Kogi with a view to setting up a world-class mine and quarry in Kogi. We also set up Mineral Resources and Environmental Management Committee to regulate mining activities in the state. Oyetola never sold or made attempt to sell any of Osun mineral licence. Instead, he acquired more mineral licences for Osun.”
“Out of the 17 licences earlier acquired by the state, the Oyetola administration added two extra licenses. Another two was even initiated for processing. The assets remained in Omoluabi’s name in a JV partnership for the purpose of asset development.
“It is on record that the Oyetola administration developed the most robust solid mineral development plan in a sector that had gone comatose before he assumed office for which the Omoluabi licences were already published in the papers for revocation in 2019 just at the beginning of his administration.
“It took the commitment of Oyetola to recover the licences, cleared all the arrears, regularised the licenses and embarked on immediate commercialisation of the assets seeking suitable partners that are technically qualified and financially capable to take over the early risk of the capital intensive mineral exploration. He never sold any. Instead, the state benefited from signature bonuses paid by the technical partners.”
“Truth is, Oyetola only sought partnerships with five firms as the terminal date of the leased mineral Licences were near so it wouldn’t revert to the FG untapped. None of the assets were forfeited. Instead, Oyetola acquired extra gold Licences for the state as the ones owned are close to expiration.
“Governor Adeleke and his team are already in close talks with the investors urging them to continue their mineral exploration efforts . This is just to prove that none of the assets were sold but remained in a JV partnership initiated by Oyetola’s administration to avoid ‘use it or lose it’ policy of the FG
“The records are there. I, therefore, see this allegation as not only untrue but a wicked one, deliberately couched to misinform the public with the sole aim of trying to cover up the obvious ineptitude of the current PDP’s administration. But like all its previous lies, this latest one too, has failed,” Omipidan added.