Osun Debt And Revenue Profile In Perspectives

Osun, under Governor Rauf Aregbesola watch, is seeing by ADEMOLA YAHAYA to have made dramatic and unprecedented progress from backwater of economic regression to the fertile place of economic abundance.

The debt profile of a state must be measured against its Gross Domestic Product (GDP) value. GDP is a broad measurement of the state overall economic activity. It is the total value of goods and services produced by an entity in a given period of time, usually annually and quarterly.

In November 27, 2010, Governor Rauf Aregbesola’s Government met a strangulating financial situation in Osun as it occupies the 34th position of 36 states in Nigeria in terms of financial muscle on the one hand and a suffocating N18.38 billion loan obtained by the immediate past PDP government on White Elephant Projects where the state had to be borrowing N1 billion monthly in order to fulfill its statutory obligations. However, with ideas, determination and some financial reengineering, Osun limitations have turned around to greatness.

Of the five states declared in 2012 by the National Bureau of Statistics with the lowest unemployment rate – Abia 11%, Oyo 9%, Lagos 8%, Kwara 7%, Osun is the lowest with 3%. What is the magic?

Within 100 days in office, Aregbesola engaged 20,000 youths in one single swoop into Osun Youth Empowerment Scheme (OYES) with N10,000 allowance for the services rendered by each cadet. Two years after, another 20,000 youths were engaged. The multiplier effects of N200 million directly injected to Osun economy monthly is very stupendous. The World Bank has adopted the scheme as a template for youth empowerment in Nigeria. This has earned Nigeria $300 million grant from the bank as a support for the Federal Government to replicate nationally.  The World Bank Sector Leader on Human Development and Youth Employment and Social Support Operation, Professor Foluso Okunmadewa, whose team had visited Osun severally to assess the scheme promised to empower more youths in Osun and called on other states to emulate Osun.

Presently, Osun Government, in collaboration with the World Bank, has empowered 1,131 less-privileged youths as part of efforts by the bank to supporting Aregbesola’s programme to banish unemployment and poverty.

Over 253,000 Elementary School Pupils are fed nutritional meals – chicken, fish, beef, eggs and fruits at every school day. Apart from serving as a tactical weapon against illiteracy and bait for greater enrolment of pupils which gives hopes in life to these kids, N1.5 billion spent on the meals is an incentive to farmers to produce more, as there is a guaranteed market for their produce. The scheme has also empowered 3,007 caterers. N800 million was committed to 750,000 School Uniform for the Elementary, Middle and High School Students, which has created 3,000 jobs for Osun people at the Omoluabi Garment Factory.

Massive road networks construction and maintenance in the cities and rural areas are unprecedented in the history of the state. A 43km highway connecting Osogbo to Kwara State; Osogbo East Bypass that connects Iwo Road, and Osogbo City Stadium to Osogbo Gbogan Road and Adebisi Akande Trumpet Interchange Bridge on Ife-Ibadan expressway among others are being completed. Workers Drive has been commissioned. Over 100km roads have been built in rural areas  and 130km access roads upgraded in some rural areas especially around production cluster areas. Apart from Lagos, Osun is a permanent construction site.

Building of State-of-art Model Schools across the State with all modern facilities that will make teaching and learning more conducive; renovation and upgrading of Tertiary Health Facilities with modern medical equipment; construction of various Primary Health Centres across the Local Government Areas with medical equipments; solar and new motorised powered boreholes are also there. The procurement of 49 highly mobile ambulances for a swift response to emergency which has saved 12,171 lives, including 8 pregnant accident victims rescued and gave birth inside the Ambulance while being conveyed to the hospitals are all good story to tell.

Under Governor Aregbesola’s watch, Osun is highly risky for criminals and crimes with procurement of 25 Armoured Personnel Carries (APC) with 100 Patrol Vehicle for 24-hour security cover of the state 365 days a year.

United Nations (UN) Multi-Dimensional Poverty Index and The Financial Derivative Company (FDC) Misery Index 2017 concluded that Osun, under Aregbesola’s administration is the Second best State in Nigeria as far as prosperity (lack of poverty) is concerned.  They affirmed, “The totality of borrowing that Osun witnessed under the Aregbesola Administration has been heavily invested in infrastructure, education, social services, human capacity development and has consequently translated into an economy with underemployment, unemployment and inflation well below national average and diverse”. In several social-economic indexes, Osun is ranked as second wealthiest States in Nigeria.

Based on Debt Management Office release on 31st December, 2016 on States and Federal Governments External Debt Stock, Osun External Debt is N70,533,845.79. However, because of the recession occasioned by missing oil money, unchecked oil theft under the PDP Government which made Nigeria to be losing 400,000 barrel per day and resulted to low income to Federation Account as well as eventual crash of oil price at the international market, virtually all states of the federation found it practically impossible to pay workers salaries, building and maintaining infrastructure and providing social amenities for the people. At a stage, the Federal Government had to be obtaining loan to pay Federal Civil Servants. This was in 2014 under President Jonathan’s PDP Government. By June 2015, 23 states, including Osun, were owing, at least, 6 months workers’ salaries. Until he could no longer borrow again, Aregbesola had to borrow to pay workers’ salaries.

It was President Buhari APC that had to bailout the situation via N713 billion, being $2.1 billion (413 billion) from Liquified Natural Gas proceeds shared by the states and Federal Government, and Central Bank of Nigeria intervention fund between N250 and N300 billion as soft loans to enable states pay outstanding salaries with Debt Management Office (DMO) helping them to restructure and extend their loans life span. This was what brought Osun internal and external loan to N179 billion to be paid in 20 years. This is the totality of loans and other debt instruments obtained by all administrations that have ruled the state.

Osun is populated by 4 million people. Its debt profile of N179 billion is to be repaid in 20 years, per annum, each Osun indigene is obliged to pay N2,237.5 to repay the debt. If this is divided per day, every Osun citizen will pay N6.1 (Six Naira, one kobo) daily for 20 years. This amount cannot buy a sachet of water popularly called Pure Water.

Osun is a rich asset. It cannot be adjudged by its allocation from the Federation Account. It has to be vis-a-vis its productivity, capacity and exchange value amongst others. If I earn N100,000 salary as a University Graduate, that is not my worth. If I were to build a house and maximum loan obtainable for me is N50,000, that can’t be the kind of money required for the project. My worth as a Graduate is between N800 million and N1 billion.

Under Governor Aregbesola watch, Osun has made dramatic and unprecedented progress from backwater of economic regression to the fertile place of economic abundance.

Ife South LG Distributes Farm Implements, Presents Buses To Religious Bodies

The Management, Ife South Local Government, under the leadership of Hon. Mufutau Adegbite has presented buses to the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) and the League of Imam and Alfa in the council, farm implements to farmers, as well as welfare package to Widows and Aged.

Presenting the materials, Adegbite said that the distribution of farm implements to the farmers was aimed at enhancing food production as food is very essential to human lives, adding that the welfare package for the widows and aged among others would eliminate poverty among the people.

The council boss also noted that the presentation of buses to the CAN and the League of Imam and Alfas was very essential to give the religious group sense of belonging.

Adegbite who promised not to relent in his efforts to transform the local government, lauded all stakeholders in the system, particularly the Governor, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola for giving him the required support to excel.

Speaking at the programme, the Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs in the state, Barrister Kolapo Alimi reiterated the state government’s commitment to better the lives of the people, particular those at the grassroot.

Alimi who noted that Governor Aregbesola has performed excellently in the areas of social amenities, security, job creation among others, commended Adegbite and his team for their efforts towards bringing dividends of democracy to the grassroot.

He noted that the materials being distributed would go a long way to improve the standard of living of the people in the council area as well as enhancing food production.

The commissioner then charged the beneficiaries to make judicious use of the items and stands with the All Progressives Congress (APC) government for more dividends of democracy.

In their separate messages, the lawmaker representing Ife South state constituency in the House of Assembly, Hon. Folorunso Bamisayemi; the Chairman APC Elders Forum in the council, Elder Jonathan Ologbenla; Elder Ogunremi Oladosu and other speakers lauded the administration of Adegbite and his team for putting smile on the faces of the people.

They then enjoined the people of the council to always support APC which they referred to as a party of the masses.

Also speaking, the wife of the council chairman, Mrs Alimat Adegbite commended his husband for emulating Governor Aregbesola and his wife, Serifat’s efforts towards making lives meaningful for the people.

He assured women that he would continue to support his husband to take good care of them, thanking them for their supports so far.

The Council Manager, Prince Osuade Adebayo; Ifetedo Progressive National President, Alhaji Musediq Ojuade; Olubosin of Ifetedo in Council among others were present at the occasion.

 

Osun 2018: Omoluabi Holdings MD Advocates Continuity In Osun

The Managing Director, Omoluabi Holdings, Dr Tunde Faleye has said the next governor that would emerge in Osun must be someone that would sustain the developmental stride of the Governor Rauf Aregbesola’s administration.

He spoke recently during an interview with OSUN DEFENDER newspaper, saying that it would be suicidal for the state to have a governor that would truncate the developmental strides that the administration has entrenched.

According to him, the only way to have the developmental strides of the administration sustained is by electing an individual that has the idea of the government programmes and policies and understand its impact on the people within the last seven years and has the same passion similar to that of Aregbesola.

He said that no matter how insincere a person might be, it would be difficult to castigate Aregbesola for non-performance, saying, the achievements of the administration is unprecedented in the history of the state.

Faleye who has started mobilization for the continuity of the APC-led government in the state under the slogan, “The Good Work Must not stop” hinted that the administration has scored firsts in majority of the programmes and projects it has executed, noting that continuity is the only way to ensure that the state is retained on a high pedestal of development.

“Continuity of an existing government that has performed like Aregbesola administration is very important to ensure that our state continues to develop. It has been tried in Lagos State and worked for them.

“No doubt, the Aregbesola administration has made significant impacts in the lives of the people of this state in all sectors of governance, be it education, health, infrastructural development, agriculture, job creation, security and human capital development in general”, he said.

He then called on the people to keep their voters’ cards save and used it to ensure the continuity of the ongoing development in the state during September 22 governorship election in the state.

Noble Actor, Osun Govt To Hold Maiden Sports Festival

By Solomon Odeniyi

An Osun-based group, Noble Actor Global Resources Limited says it will be collaborating with the Department of Sport and Ministry of Social Protection, Sports and Special Need in Osun to organise the first ever Sports Festival in the state.

The festival, a 15-day event is billed to hold between 5th and 19th of October, 2018.

According to the convener, Taofik Lawal, the Osun Sport Festival would be chaired by former Super Eagles coach and FIFA instructor, Chief Adegboyega Onigbinde, noting that the festival would engage the entire local government areas of the state in the over 15 sports including the traditional sports.

He noted that the event was necessitated by their understanding of sports as an inestimable tool of unity and a veritable means by which to engage young people with elaborate sporting talents.

Lawal added that over the past years, sporting event of this dimension has proven to be more than necessary as new talents who are not yet discovered in the agrarian settlement in the state would be unveiled.

He however, stated that the absence of private sector participation in sports in the state has served as a clog in the wheel in reviving active sports in the state, urging private organisations to invest heavily in sports as they stand to gain a lot helping to build a formidable sporting tradition in the state.

He said: “There is a lot the private stand to benefit apart from the moral task of social/corporate responsibility. The development of the European League is a clear example of what both community and private sector stand to benefit. The idealistic fulfillment that comes with helping to expose raw talents to the cheering eyes of millions of viewers worldwide and innumerable talent scout also comes with the benefit of endearing the product of the partnering corporate bodies into the hearts of millions of viewers in the world.’’

The Commissioner of Social Protection, Sports and Special Need, Mr Biyi Odunlade, who was represented by Gbenga Olanrewaju, appreciated the group for partnering in sport development in the state, saying more of this event would help engage the youths, which would help sustain the peace witnessed in the state as well as stimulate unity among the populace in the state.

He added that events of this nature would provide an opportunity to scout for new talents waiting to be discovered, assuring the group the best among the athletes discovered will be trained and prepared for the national sports festival in November and believed they would make the state proud just like Mujidat and her counterpart in Commonwealth games.

Osun Govt Assures Residents Of Adequate Security Of Lives, Property

The state Government of Osun has assured the people of the state of adequate security of their lives and property.

Commissioner for Information and Strategy in the state, Adelani Baderinwa said the government has not relented on its efforts in providing maximum security and ensuring peace and harmony in the state.

He attributed the peaceful atmosphere of the state to proactiveness and security consciousness of Governor Rauf Aregbesola and the social justice being rendered by his administration.

He stated this while answering journalists’ questions on Monday while speaking on the recent security breach of multiple bank robberies in Offa, Kwara state that led to several deaths and loss of huge amount of currencies vis-à-vis relative peace been enjoyed in the State of Osun.

Baderinwa maintained that the essence of governance is to ensure peace, harmony and security of lives and property of the people, stating that Aregbesola had taken the bull by the horn in ensuring that every citizen of the state is protected and people could sleep with their two eyes closed.

According to the commissioner, Osun is being rated one of the five top most peaceful states in Nigeria because Aregbesola’s administration has put in place adequate security measures that make it difficult for crime perpetrations to thrive.

He said: “Aregbesola was perhaps the most prepared person for governorship position. He had his practical manifestoes for the smooth running of office.

“One of the Six Integral Action Plan of Aregbesola’s government is Communal Peace and Progress. Essence of government is to ensure peace and harmony and social justice in the land, and that is what Aregbesola is offering the people of the state

“Aregbesola had been proactive on provision of security of lives and property of the people in the state. And that is why we are enjoying peace in the state of Osun. He procured and distributed 125 security patrol vehicles and 25 Armoured Personnel Carrier to security agencies in the state to enhance security of the state.”

Baderinwa commiserated with the Kwara state government, the Olofa of Offa, Oba Muftau Gbadamosi and the Nigeria Police Force on the robbery incident that claimed many lives.

The commissioner spoke further: “Provision of security in every society begins with ensuring protection of lives and property and putting in place social justice and equity that ensure youth engagement. These two aspects of governance are strategic to curtailing crimes in the society, and I am happy that Osun people know that Aregbesola has ensured social justice and engaged the youths positively.

Besides, the Aregbesola’s administration in 2012 procured and distributed 125 security patrol vehicles and 25 modern Armoured Personnel Carrier to security agencies in the state. This has enhanced the security of lives and property in the state.”

Baderinwa tasked the people of the state on community policing, saying that security is a collective effort and required the cooperation of all stakeholders.

He urged the people to be vigilant and conscious of everybody in their neighbourhood, just as he assured them of adequate security of lives and property.

 

Stakeholders Score Osun High On Public Procurement Policy

By Solomon Odeniyi

Stakeholders have scored the government of the State of Osun high in the implementation of the State Public Procurement Law.

They spoke at a sensitisation workshop on Public Procurement Reform and Understanding of the provision of the State of Osun Public Procurement Law in Osogbo on Tuesday.

In their separate remarks, the state Commissioner for Finance, Mr Bola Oyebamiji and the General Manager, Osun Public Procurement Agency, Mr  Ayodele Fatoberu said the insistence on due process has guaranteed value for money  in the procurement process in the state.

Oyebamiji noted that with a keen determination to overturn the doldrums that have perverse and constrained the state from joining some other developed states, the administration has initiated reform programmes that were internationally accepted as bedrock for promoting best practice in public finance management.

He said: “Of note, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola administration revised the outdated Tax Administration Law, by passing a new one in 2012 along side Osun Fiscal Responsibility Law, and Bond Administration Law among others.

“With the vision of transforming and repositioning Osun as industrial and commercial hub, the government prioritised infrastructural development in all the nooks and crannies of the state.

“Recognising the pivotal roles of institutionalising sound public procurement system, particularly in promoting probity, and effective use of public resources, the Aregbesola administration set the machinery in motion to develop Public Procurement Bill, and passed in February 2015 and automatically become legal instrument for conducting public procurement in Osun”, he noted.

According to Oyebamiji, with the operation of the law, the state government has also developed ‘Standard Bidding Document for Works, Goods and Consultancy Services’.

Speaking earlier, Fatoberu who described public procurement as the basis of transparency, accountability and value for money commended the state government for allowing the state Public Procurement Law to work well.

He said that the law is now being institutionalised in all the local government council areas of the state, saying the essence of the gathering  is to sensitise the stakeholders on how the law works and the sanctions attached to it under the law.

 

Council Boss Charges Youth Corps Members To Be Job Creators

All outgoing and serving corps members in Orolu Local Government have been charged to be creative, self-reliant and independent instead of searching for white-collar jobs after service year.

This charge was given last week at the Kingdom hall by the executive chairman of Orolu local government council area, Hon Adekunle Benson during the Easter Picnic fiesta organised by the council for all serving and outgoing corps members in the local government area.

This is contained in a statement issued and released by his Media Assistant, Mr Alao Waheed.

Benson enjoined the corps members to assist government in reducing unemployment rate in the country, advising them to focus on skill acquisition, skill development and expertise that would make them to be job creators and self-dependent rather than job seekers.

According to him, “I will like to advise you all, to legitimately engage in anything that will make you to be self-employed, as white collar jobs are very scarce and even no longer available for almost all employable graduates,”said the council boss.

He further said, “I must also advise you that white-collar jobs are not even lucrative anymore, but you will conquer poverty once you are creative and engage in self-help jobs”.

He further charged the corps members to be hard working and contribute their quota to the educational development of students, state as well as the task of achieving a united, peaceful, and egalitarian society, noting that they are the future leaders of the nation, as he promised them unflinching support in any project or programme that would benefit people of the community they are serving.

In his remark, the Head Of Department of Community Development and Information, Alh Kasim commended the corps members for making remarkable impacts in education sector for the betterment of tomorrow’s leaders and for the development of the state, enjoining them to be hard working and serve as a good role model.

He said that securing automatic employment from the government or private organisations in the country is no longer automatic, saying that corps members need to learn something and become independent after the service.

While speaking, the local government inspector of the NYSC in Orolu, Mrs. Jimoh commended the local government authority for the laudable gesture, stating that the programme is the first of its kind to be held by the council.

She therefore congratulated the outgoing corps members for successfully passing through the four cardinal points of the scheme, Orientation, Primary Assignment, Community Development Service and Passing out, urging them to be diligent and innovative.

Speaking on behalf of the corps members, Mr Silvester thanked the local government authority especially the executive chairman of the council for everything he has been doing, promising that corps members would try and redouble their efforts at making students excel in their studies.

Dignitaries at the programme include; the vice chairman of Orolu local government, Hon Toyin Adeleke; Leader of the house, Hon Durodola Rafiu; his deputy, Hon Ganiyu Isiaka; the councillor representing Olufon ward 5, Hon Opeyemi Razaq; the council manager, Alhaja Nimotallahi Olagunju; councillors, Civil servants, political leaders and members among others.

Selection Process For New Olubosin Will Be Rancour-free, Says Balogun Of Ifetedo

By Shina Abubakar

Indigenes of Ifetedo, Ife-South Local Government have been assured of a transparent process in the selection of another monarch to fill the vacant stool of the Olubosin of Ifetedo.

Balogun of Ifetedo, High Chief Akin Akinrera, gave the assurance while speaking with newsmen during the Interdenominational Service organised by the community in honour of the late monarch, Oba Isaac Adebare Ilori, who became Oba at the age of 76 in 2010, and passed on after 8 years of eventful reign.

He said the legacy of peace left behind by Oba Adebare would be sustained.

Akinrera said:” I contested the stool with the late Oba Adebare but he was made an Oba in November, 2010.

“The monarch that reigned before him created crisis in Ifetedo. So, upon his demise, we could not move forward for two years. Oba Adebare did not say because I contested with him, two months after he was made an Oba, he elevated me from the position of lesser chief I was.

“Unknown to me, he had good plans for me. He wanted an elite in major position of authority and his plans worked out well. Few months after my elevation, the next in rank to Olubosin died and I was made Balogun.

“According to 1959 Chieftaincy Declaration guiding emergence of Oba in Ifetedo, when an Olubosin joins his ancestors, Balogun automatically becomes Olubosin. I appeal to our people to ensure the legacy of peace and large heartedness left behind by late Oba Adebare is sustained.

“I have promised to keep Ifetedo together in peace as done by the late Oba Adebare. It is tough call but we owe the memory of our late monarch that duty.”

Speaking in similar vein, the chairman, Ifetedo Progressive Union (IPU), Mr. Gbenga Ojuade and Hon Folorunsho Bamisayemi, the member representing Ife South State Consistency in the Osun House of Assembly, said Oba Adebare’s peaceful stance, saved the town from crises when it was thrown into darkness for almost three years.

Ojuade said: “for three years, we were in darkness in this town. Our people could not bear it again at a point, but late Oba Adebare insisted they should not resort to violence. He managed the situation well. May God rest his soul, amen. We will miss him.

Meanwhile, Governor Rauf Aregbesola has been urged to relocate more colleges of Osun state University (UNIOSUN) to Ifetedo, the headquarters of Ife South local government area of the state, the town which currently hosts the institution’s Faculty of Law.

This, according to the Executive Secretary, Ife South local government area, Mr. Ayodeji Adegbite, will enable residents of the host community to feel the full impact of having a university campus in the town.

Aide Calls For More Support For Aregbesola’s Education Reforms

Special Adviser, Osun Ministry of Information and Strategy, Mr. Semiu Okanlawon, has called on stakeholders in the education sector to give more support to Governor Rauf Aregbesola’s bid to overhaul the education sector in the state.

He said that in seven years of the Aregbesola administration, it has been proved that so much can still be done with so little.

Okanlawon, who was the chairman at the Triennial congress of the Ansar-ud-deen Society of Nigeria (Osun Branch), held in Iwo between Friday and Sunday, said Aregbesola government’s vision in education tallied well with the mission of the Islamic society which he said began as a movement to give Muslims quality education without surrendering their faith.

Okanlawon while addressing delegates to the Congress, urged the stakeholders in Osun, including religious organisations to support the Rauf Aregbesola administration in its bid to fully overhaul the education sector in the state.

He said with education as the first basic reason for the formation of the society 95 years ago, it is incumbent on the society to support a government that gives its all to the promotion of education and advancement of knowledge.

 

BOSS Has Saved Almost N9 Billion For Osun – Ifaturoti

By Solomon Adeniyi

The Director-General, Bureau of Social Services (BOSS), Office of the Governor of Osun, Mr. Olufemi Ifaturoti has said his agency has saved approximately N9 billion for the state since its establishment, a feat which he maintained is unprecedented in the annals of the 27-year-old state.

The agency according to him, was created out of the desire to ensure total delivery of value for the public being served

Mr. Ifaturoti stated this while granting audience to the Nigerian Television Authority, Ibadan Network Centre delegation led by its Zonal Director, Mrs. Jennifer Famosinpe in his office in Oshogbo.

The Director-General stated that BOSS is a product of series of brainstorming sessions before the advent of the present Rauf Aregbesola’s administration where it was discovered that strict adherence to merit is pivotal to the success of every serious minded administration.

Ifaturoti who went down the memory lane as he recounted developments recorded before the advent of the present administration in the state with specific reference to a retreat anchored by himself together with Amb. Olu Otunla, Dr. Charles Akinola and Mr. Kola Omotunde-Young which comprised of Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola and his then colleagues in the Lagos State Executive Council, maintained that the parley came up with a sixteen paged communique which was meticulously compressed into the Green Book (My Pact With The People of Osun) out of the desire to produce a handy material in both English and Yoruba.

The Legal Luminary told the delegation that the unparalleled success recorded by the Rauf Aregbesola’s administration is not unconnected to his painstaking preparation for the office he is presently occupying since 2005 after he expressed his intention for the highest office in the Land of Virtue.

Mr. Ifaturoti, a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Arbitrators, stated that in its quest at enhancing public value delivery through its Projects’ Monitoring and Surveillance operations, the agency visited every road construction site across the state between 5 and 9 times, adding that the distance covered is a similitude of driving from Osogbo all the way to the United Kingdom.

He asserted that OYES which has empowered about 45,000 youths domiciled in Osun, came into being to address employability and successful career issues, maintaining that the resounding success recorded by OYES cannot be unconnected with the unparalleled commitment of Ogbeni Aregbesola who as far back as 2008 about two years before his assumption of duty reiterated his readiness to make use of his security vote as Governor to finance OYES if that is the only option available for him for the  programme not to fail.

He maintained that YESSO which is a World Bank-assisted support operation designed to tackle poverty and vulnerability  is an offshoot of the highly successful OYES initiative of the Aregbesola’s administration, adding that YESSO through its Community Based Targeting Exercise has generated the Single Register of the Poor and Vulnerable Households in the state widely adjudged to be credible from where the public workfare, skills for job, conditional cash transfer and other subsequent interventions of Government have been mining their potential beneficiaries.

Present at the interactive session was the Honourable Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr. Adelani Baderinwa

 

Osun Assembly Frowns At Business Owners Avoiding Taxes

By Israel Afolabi

The State of Osun House of Assembly has frowned at business owners that circumvent payment of tariffs and levies to the coffers of the state government.

Chairman House committee on Environment and Sanitation, Hon Ajibola Akinloye stated this on Thursday at a meeting with representatives of Charcoal dealers and officials in charge of forestry in the state at the Assembly Complex Osogbo.

Akinloye made it known that this is the second meeting held with the association to let permanent peace reign in the State and to iron out the issues in connection with their businesses, adding that it will ensure that no category of people in the charcoal business is made to carry the burden of levies and tariffs payment on behalf of others.

According to him, business men and women should avoid cutting corners in their business transaction in the state, because government is trying to do its best to develop the state, saying the House will take a bold step on Charcoal producers that are not paying their dues and tariff to the government.

However, he charged the forest guards not to overcharge the people in order to avoid fraudulent act and unethical practice in forestry activities.

He also maintained that the legislators will soon hold a meeting with Charcoal producers in the state to achieve mutual understanding of government policy on forestry activities.

In his contribution, member of the committee, Hon. Ibrahim Gbadebo urged the Charcoal dealer association to assist government with their taxes and other levies for state to generate revenue.

He advised the Association Executives to embrace openness and unity in their business transactions and comply with rules and regulations.

Meanwhile, in his reaction, the Special Assistance to the Governor on Forestry Mr. Gbemileke Ayanbunmi explained that government only charges levies on charcoal producers not the sellers.

According to him, there is nothing like double taxation in the state, forestry charges are meant for the Charcoal producer not for the sellers”.

Speaking earlier, Chairman and Secretary of Charcoal Dealers Association in the state, Mr Adisa Akinloye and Mrs. Bola Ayankanye explained the difficulty often encountered while the charcoals are on transit to the town.

They stated that their resolve to be paying levies on behalf of producers was to fast-track their trading activities.

They also pleaded with the House to find lasting solution to their problems and requested that government should reduce the charges to N50.00 per bag.