Ogun State Governor, Senator Ibikunle Amosun has shed light on why two oil giants, Chevron and Shell Petroleum, pulled out of the Olokola Liquefied Natural Gas (OKLNG) Project.
Amosun, who addressed reporters in Abeokuta after a meeting with members of the Ogun Elders’ Consultative Forum that visited him on Monday, said both firms must have pulled out of the multi-billion dollar project apparently due to the expertise and quantum of investments the Dangote Group and other indigenous entrepreneurs are bringing into the Olokola Free Trade Zone (OKFTZ).
The massive investment and expertise which the indigenous investors, such as Aliko Dangote, Jim Ovia and others, are planning for Olokola FTZ sent away the foreign investors away, he stressed, adding that the Refinery and Petrol-Chemical project would soon start operation in full force.
He said other local investors, are planning to build fertiliser and amonia plants in the area, stating that about 90 per cent of what is being done in Olokola FTZ, falls within the jurisdiction of Ogun State, just as neighbouring Ondo State is also playing a role in the project.
He said: “May be you don’t understand this, it’s not only Chevron, there are about four, or five parties and because they have realised that nothing was happening then, and now, they’ve realised, yes Alhaji Aliko Dangote and us as a state that some of the people that are there have actually been bought over, that I can confirm to you.
“And what will Chevron be doing there when of course, there are big players as well, the gentleman that is building the Refinery is not a novice; he will get the best in the world to come and build it and it’s like what he is doing is a direct competition with Chevron, so if he is doing it, so how?”
He continued: “Look at the quantum of money being invested there; it is even far more than, probably more than ten times what Chevron wanted to invest there.
“Let me even be modest and say that almost all 90 per cent of what is being done now in Olokola falls directly within Ogun state. If you look at the bigger picture, it is between Ogun and Ondo states, but not that probably we will still not go and may be do phase two with Ondo state.
“But as we speak today, the deep seaport, the fertiliser and amonia, everything that Dangote wants to do is in Ogun State and I’m sure by October, we should be there and the Refinery will commence. Dangote is partnering with us, but it is not Dangote alone, I am aware that Mr Jim Ovia is bringing in amonia to the site, fertiliser is coming, some people are building; it is a whole lot of things that are coming.”
Earlier, the state’s Elders Consultative Forum lauded the efforts of Senator Amosun at rebuilding the state through urban renewal projects, clean environment, infrastructural developments and security of lives and property among others.
Former World Court Judge, Prince Bola Ajibola, who spoke for the group, described Amosun as “hardworking, effective and performing Governor” whose “concern for Ogun State very much at his heart,” said the Governor’s “diligence” would surely enable him to be counted at surely end of the day among “kings and not among mere men.”