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Amosun, Abiodun trade words over failure of Dangote to site refinery in Ogun State

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The accusation made against him by his successor, Dapo Abiodun, over the transfer of the billion Dangote refinery from Ogun to Lagos State, has been characterised by the immediate past governor of Ogun State, Senator Ibikunle Amosun, as false.

Amosun, on Wednesday, spoke through his media aide, Bola Adeyemi, while reacting to the statement issued by Abiodun on Tuesday, alleging that “The then governor (Amosun), perhaps, having a personal axe to grind with the promoter of the refinery project, Alhaji Aliko Dangote, frustrated all the efforts” to have the refinery in Ogun State.

But reacting on Wednesday, Amosun said, “It is most uncharitable for anyone to churn out lies that Ogun State was in a position to unilaterally frustrate the project or was responsible for the logjam.

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“With respect to all sides, it accords more with logic to appreciate the fact that Alhaji Aliko Dangote took business decisions of his own in accordance with the goals of his business strategy and risk assessment.”

Amosun explained that the Olokola Free Trade Zone was not solely owned by Ogun State but a Joint Venture from its conception in 2007.

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He explained “The Federal Government of Nigeria owned the majority 51 per cent, Ondo State Government (14.5 per cent), Ogun State Government (14.5 per cent), and strategic core investors (20 per cent).

“Alhaji Aliko Dangote, according to the information available to us when we took office, subsequently bought, and took over the 20 per cent equity of the core investors. Ogun State was a minority equity stakeholder only, without proprietary strength and capacity to take sole decisions on the Joint Venture enterprise.”

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Amosun asserted that he would never have intentionally missed an opportunity to help Ogun State and its residents, and he did everything in his power to appease and satisfy his conscience.

Amosun said at the time, he appointed Abiodun and Mrs Kemi Adeosun, then Commissioner for Finance, “who incidentally hailed from the host community of Olokola,” to represent the interest of Ogun State.

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He said, “After Mrs Adeosun was elevated and became a minister, another son of Ogun East, Lekan Onamusi, took charge and represented Ogun State on the Joint Venture.

“Based on the advice of our representatives on the project, we engaged the majority equity holder, FGN, and our joint venture partner, Ondo State Government, who were very responsive and eager to have the project in Olokola Free Trade Zone.

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“We also vigorously engaged Alhaji Aliko Dangote and did everything possible to make the enterprise take off. A total of 10,000 hectares of land was made available. As a mere holder of 14.5 per cent equity interest, it is most uncharitable for anyone to churn out lies that Ogun State was in a position to unilaterally frustrate the project or was responsible for the logjam.”

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