The Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi, Ojaja II, has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with a Chinese company to create employment opportunities for over 50,000 indigenes of the state.
Ooni signed the MoU with China Overseas Energy Development Technology Ltd on Tuesday in Ile-Ife under Community and Private Partnership arrangement.
He said that the company would invest in agriculture, green energy, gold, lithium and other mineral resources in Ile-Ife and the state at large.
According to him, the Chinese company will also focus on the development of agriculture; mechanised farming and the production of cocoa in large quantity.
The traditional ruler stated that the MoU would help the indigenes of the state to enjoy unprecedented investment flow, while assuring that the company would not disappoint in the area of funds.
“The partnership we are signing today with China Overseas Technology Development Company Ltd is going to create over 50,000 employment opportunities to Osun indigenes.
“The company would first invest in agriculture and would set up a cocoa processing plant in Ife-ife, which will serve as its agricultural hub.
“The company will farm on over 20,000 hectares of land, generate green energy using solar which is starting from this palace.
“This palace will be powered by solar 100 per cent within the next 30 to 60 days when it is completed,” Ooni stated.
Continuing, Oba Ogunwusi said the future of Nigeria oil and gas lies in lithium, noting that soonest lithium would be the only means to power battery, electric cars among others.
He added that partnership with the Chinese company would be Community and Private Partnership driven which would help to grow the economy at the community level.
Ooni, who emphasised that the investment would be on a large scale both for Osun and the Federal Government, called for the support of all and sundry.
“In Dubai alone, the Chinese company has investment more than 10 billion U.S. dollars. In South Sudan right now, they are investing over 4 billion dollars. They are now ready to invest double of such investment in Nigeria,” he stated.
Speaking at the occasion, Gov. Ademola Adeleke lauded Ooni for the initiative and the management of the Chinese company for agreeing to invest in the state.
Adeleke restated his commitment to promote culture, tourism and entertainment in the state to improve the wellbeing of residents.
In his remarks, Mr Zhang Xiaolin, the Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, China Oversea Energy Development Ltd, congratulated Ooni on the celebration of Olojo 2023.
Xiaolin also applauded the traditional ruler for partnering with the company and pledged that the company would adhere to the agreement terms. (NAN)(www.nannews.ng)
Edited by Tayo Ikujuni