Of Bunmi Tunji Ojo, NDDC and Successive Representatives

Of Bunmi Tunji Ojo, NDDC and Successive Representatives

By Sunday Menukuro

 

Much is being said concerning the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) in Ondo state, its successive Representatives, including Hon. Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo who is the current Chairman, House Committee on NDDC.

No man or woman from the mandate areas of Ilaje and Ese Odo Local governments who is not sad with what the people are passing through in the region especially when we consider the amount of money that had been released for the development of the place and the much still being expended with little or nothing to show for it.

Of particular importance is Bunmi Tunji-Ojo’s roles since he became the Chairman, House Committee Chairman on the Commission. Taking my time to critically scrutinise his roles and activities as they affect Ondo state, I have the following discoveries to write about:

Olubunmi Tunji Ojo

1. Hon. Tunji-Ojo has succeeded in influencing over 48 billion naira budget for Ondo state with 2.6 billion naira going to his Akoko North Federal Constituency out of the budgeted amount.

 

2. Through him, the sum of 800 million naira had been released for the restoration of electricity to Ikale, Ilaje and Ese Odo axis of the Southern Senatorial District and subsequent payment is being processed to ensure the completion of the project needed to restore electricity to the southern district before the end of the year.

 

3. Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo has helped to include in the budget the construction of the road from Araromi, in Ilaje local government to Lagos and work will commence soon.

 

4. I gathered that through the influence of Hon Tunji-Ojo, five employments in NDDC were secured for our hitherto unemployed youths in the area and the employment letters are already being issued.

5. It is also instructive that Hon. Tunji-Ojo consulted critical stakeholders in the area, and they made their inputs before the Ondo State budget in NDDC was submitted and approved.

6. I am sure that the activities of Hon. Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo about Ondo projects are not limited to what I put here. These are the ones I gathered.

 

7. On the roads in Akoko being influenced by Tunji-Ojo, I gathered that the roads had been awarded long before Tunji-Ojo resumed in the National Assembly. The roads in question were not executed until he got to the National Assembly and threatened to prosecute and jail the contractors, which compelled them to return to sites for the execution of the projects.

 

I am aware too that Hon. Omolafe Adedayo (Expensive) similarly wrote to the contractors handling the abandoned NDDC projects awarded for the development of Akure area, threatening to jail them before they could return to the site, and they are working very seriously to complete the projects in Akure and its environs. Even Hon. Mayowa Akinfolarin has ordered the contractors handling NDDC projects in Odigbo/Ileoluji area to go to site and complete the projects on time, and they have since gone back to work accordingly. We expect that our own Rep. Hon. Kolade Akinjo will do same immediately.

 

It should be noted that these roads were awarded when our own sons were Representatives in the NDDC. There can never be any award of contracts in the board without the board members. So, if blames are to be apportioned we need to look inward to those under whose noses the contracts were awarded, not Tunji-Ojo and others who inherited the abandoned projects and enforced their continuation and completion.

Some of the other projects in the budget are:

 

1. PROJECT DESCRIPTION: CONSTRUCTION OF UGBONLA – AYETORO ROAD/ BRIDGE.

LOCATION: AYETORO, ILAJE LOCAL GOVERNMENT.

STATE: ONDO STATE.

AMOUNT: (N6.5BILLION)

NOTE: WE CAN START WITH THE DESIGN IN THIS VERY BUDGET – N500,000,000.

 

2. PROJECT DESCRIPTION: CONSTRUCTION OF MODEL HOSPITAL (ON PILE FOUNDATION) WITH MEDICAL EQUIPMENTS AT OBE NLA.

LOCATION: OBE NLA, ILAJE LGA.

STATE: ONDO STATE

AMOUNT: (N2.1 BILLION)

 

3. PROJECT DESCRIPTION: CONSTRUCTION OF MODEL HOSPITAL WITH MEDICAL EQUIPMENTS ( ON PILE FOUNDATION) AT OGOGORO.

LOCATION: OGOGORO, ILAJE LGA.

STATE: ONDO STATE

AMOUNT (N2.1 BILLION)

 

4. PROJECT DESCRIPTION: CONSTRUCTION OF CONCRETE JETTY WITH 1KM INTERNAL (CONCRETE) WALKWAY AT OBE NLA

LOCATION: OBE NLA, ILAJE LGA.

STATE: ONDO STATE

AMOUNT: (N500,000,000)

 

5. PROJECT DESCRIPTION: CONSTRUCTION OF CONCRETE JETTY WITH 1KM INTERNAL (CONCRETE) WALKWAY AT ODOFADO.

LOCATION: ODOFADO, ILAJE LGA.

STATE: ONDO STATE

AMOUNT: (N500,000,000)

 

6. PROJECT DESCRIPTION: CONSTRUCTION OF ADAGBAKUJA/UGBO INTERNAL ROADS, LOT 1-5.

LOCATION: ADAGBAKUJA, ILAJE LGA.

STATE: ONDO STATE

AMOUNT: (N3.8 BILLION).

 

ALSO, PROJECT REVIEW AND RECOMMENDATIONS

1. JETTY FACILITY ON ABOTO RIVER IN ILAJE LOCAL GOVERNMENT – N600,000,000

 

2. ROAD REHABILITATION FROM OKE IPARE – ABOTO – IGBOKODA (17.6KM) – N3.8B

3. SOLAR CITY DEVELOPMENT (ROAD, WATER, POWER) – N1,500,000,000

· Clearing of 100 – 200 Hectares of land.

2MW gas power generating facility

 

Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo is a God sent to us and I think he needs to be encouraged. According to Henry Longfellow, “when nature has a work to do it creates a genius to do it”. Henry might have had the likes of Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo at heart when he made this prophetic statement, as Tunji-Ojo’s short tenure as the Chairman House committee on NDDC in the Nigerian House of Representatives depicts.

I must confess that Hon Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo’s influence in the House of Representatives helped him to get the exalted position of the Chairman House Committee on the Commission, otherwise the Chairmanship would have gone to the other states and these projects and the ones to come would have eluded us, and we would not have been able to do anything about it like it happened in the past. Sometime in the past, someone from Bomadi, Delta State was there as the House Committee Chairman for ten years and nobody from Ondo state could see him for any deliberation on the projects meant for State.

 

My take on Hon Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo is that the young and highly intelligent man is God sent to the Ilaje and Ese Odo and the entire Ondo state in particular and Nigeria in general. He has been so concerned about Ondo State, using his good offices in the National Assembly to intervene and influence matters in favour of the state.

 

I have it on good authority that he has rendered a lot of assistance to the people of the state who approached him for one intervention or the other.

That brings my mind to the day I led a delegation of the unpaid Presidential Amnesty Students, in my capacity as its National Coordinator, to his office shortly after he became the Committee Chairman in 2019. The passion with which Hon Tunji-Ojo showed interest in our case was so encouraging. When we were leaving his office he surprised us by giving us money to take care of our hotel accommodation, feeding and transportation which we didn’t plan for nor expected.

There is no gain-saying that many people who have had one or two things to do with Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo would have a lot of things to say to testify to his kindness and responsiveness.

 

It is my opinion that Bunmi Tunji-Ojo has done unprecedentedly well. He is currently making history. I admonish all of us to encourage him to be able to do more.

May I also use this medium to appeal to Hon Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo to continue to explore every opportunity to the advantage of our Sunshine State, especially for the Ilaje and Ese Odo people and other mandate areas

 

Sunday Menukuro writes from Akure, Ondo state.

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