Agro cargo airports worldwide offer a range of facilities and services to ensure the safe transportation of passengers and cargo. They play a crucial role in maintaining the safety of goods during transit. For instance, in China, private companies conduct numerous cargo flights to reduce transportation costs and alleviate congestion in shipping.
Similarly, the International Cargo Trade Center in New York serves as an exemplary model, with cargo planes equipped to handle over one million tons of goods. These airports provide technical expertise on cargo handling operations and logistics.
Although Nigeria is a developing country with the largest black population globally, this issue goes beyond its status. Often, the country witnesses the construction of extravagant projects that lack transparency in governance, resulting in economic collapse and mismanagement of financial institutions.
Agro cargo airports primarily focus on exporting and delivering agricultural products. Thus, the agro cargo airport in Ilishan, Remo, Ogun state aims to facilitate the export of agricultural goods from Nigeria to other parts of the world, including the West, Middle East, and Asia.
Initially, the Ogun state government planned to allocate over 62 billion naira to the project, which has since been abandoned. Governor Dapo Abiodun, who claimed the agro cargo airport would positively impact the construction of hotels and warehouses in the state, has failed to fulfill his duties.
At present, this incomplete white elephant project has reportedly consumed over 40 billion naira.
The governor of Ogun state has a history of initiating projects that remain stalled or abandoned at various stages. This irresponsible behavior has become synonymous with his character.
Moreover, since the commencement of the cargo airport’s construction, which is intended to transform into a passenger airport in the future, Governor Abiodun has displayed a lack of seriousness regarding its completion. He merely visits the site for photo opportunities, often dressed flamboyantly in adire agbada.
The airport, valued at billions of naira, is likely to serve as a means for enriching the pockets of the corrupt state governor, Prince Dapo Abiodun, MFR.
During my personal assessment visit, I discovered that the project only consists of a partially completed fence with the airport’s name inscribed on it and a two-lane asphalt road. The governor himself should bear the shame as he proves to be a waste of Ogun state taxpayers’ money and a disappointment to the people of Iperu Akesan.
When Dapo and his team assumed power in 2019, the people of Ogun state welcomed the new government with joy and enthusiasm. However, they now find themselves in a state of shock, realizing that the supposedly hardworking and dignified Mr. Heyden was merely a wolf in sheep’s clothing.
Another member of the All Progressive Congress, Dr. Kayode Fayemi of Ekiti state (as he was then), embarked on a similar fraudulent project in Ekiti state. The Ekiti cargo airport was inaugurated in October 2022 after the state government spent billions of naira on an unfinished airport.
Based on the aforementioned, I am convinced that our beloved state and indeed our dear country, Nigeria, are in the hands of thieves and fraudsters who are determined to hinder Nigeria’s progress towards enlightenment.
It is worth noting that Mr. Dapo Abiodun has reportedly been convicted of fraud in the past, suggesting that he possesses the expertise and experience to perpetuate another fraudulent scheme.
In conclusion, I seize this opportunity to address Governor Dapo Abiodun and his associates, urging them to consider the consequences that await them and the explanations they will provide to their creator.
Lastly, the governor should prioritize the commencement of quality work at the airport site to strengthen the state’s position as an export corridor. This will generate the necessary revenue to transform and develop Ogun state into Nigeria’s industrial complex.
Tao Bakare is an advocate for good governance and can be reached via email@example.com or 09125954737.