Ekiti State Government is set to partner with Canada on the production of 10 megawatts of electricity in the state.
The state Governor, Dr. Kayode Fayemi dropped this hint in his office in Ado Ekiti , while receiving the Canadian High Commissioner to Nigeria, Mr. Chris Cooter, in his office, at the end of his two-day working visit to Ekiti at the weekend.
Governor Fayemi stressed that the power generated through the proposed Independent Power Project (IPP) would boost development in the state.
According to him, key institutions including the state university, the Teaching Hospital, Oodua Enterprises Center as well as other government establishments would enjoy uninterrupted power supply through the project.
The Governor also noted that the proposed joint venture initiative would take particular interest in the vast amount of solid minerals in the state. The minerals according to him, include granite, kaolin, marble, feldspar and other precious stones awaiting exploration in the state.
Reiterating the determination of his administration to utilize resources in the state to attract investors and fast-track development, Dr. Fayemi lamented that most of the resources had remained largely untapped.
The Governor explained that his administration established the Solid Mineral Development Agency to correct the anomaly and ensure that people in the state benefit from the resources nature has bestowed on the state.
Fayemi said: “It is time we brought serious minded investors to the state.” Other areas of possible cooperation with the Canadian Government, according to the Governor, were education, tourism and agriculture.
Fayemi who stressed the importance of education to his administration, said Ekiti State could benefit from what he called the unique system of education in Canada. He added that the state would sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Premier of Manitoba, Canada in October to firm up the partnership.
In his remark, the Canadian High Commissioner to Nigeria, Mr. Christopher Cooter lauded the efforts of the Fayemi administration at developing the state. The Canadian High Commissioner who said he had visited numerous tourist sites in the state within 24 hours, added that he was impressed with the massive construction and rehabilitation works going on in the state.
The envoy noted that his visit to the state was a follow up on Governor Fayemi’s earlier visit to his home country as well as to the Canadian High Commission in Abuja.
Cooter said that the Canadian Government was interested in partnering countries and states particularly the third world countries towards enhancing development and world peace.
He disclosed that Ekiti would be one of the few states to benefit in the first phase of the initiative.”I think we have all registered the basis for a good relationship”, Cooter said.
Earlier on the first day of his visit, the Canadian High Commissioner had lauded the efforts of the Dr. Fayemi-led administration towards enhancing all-round rapid development of the State; saying that the State is a model for any investor who wants to come to Nigeria.
The High Commissioner gave the recommendation at Ikogosi Ekiti after an inspection tour of some on-going projects in the education, tourism and agro-allied sectors of the State. The Envoy who was on a two –day working visit to the state, undertook the tour with a view to assessing the developmental drive of the Fayemi-led administration.
The tour saw Mr. Cooter, at the Ekiti-Odua Industrial Centre in Ado, Ekiti State University, Ado Ekiti, State Technical College, Ado Ekiti, the palace of the Ewi of Ado Ekiti, Ikogosi resort and Arinta waterfall at Ipole Iloro. He was accompanied by the state Commissioner for Integration and Inter-governmental Affairs, Mrs Bunmi Dipo-Salami; Commisioner for Education, Science and Technology, Dr (Mrs) Eniola Ajayi; Director-General, Bureau of Public Procurement (BPP), Mr Lekan Faromika; Director General, Ekiti Enterprise Development Agency (EEDA), Mr Oscar Ayeleso and other state officials.
Speaking at Ikogosi after the inspection tour, the High Commissioner said the visit was aimed at establishing a cordial relationship between Ekiti State and Canada in the three sectors; stressing that since education is key to the socio-economic development of any nation and the passion of the present administration to revamp the education sector, the government of Canada was ready to partner with the state in achieving its lofty vision.
While noting that Ekiti State has enough human capital resources as well as natural potentials that could make it a destination for investors from all parts of the world, Mr. Cooter assured that he would help in facilitating the coming of Canadian investors to the State, even as he confirmed that many of the investors are eager to come to the State following reports that it is one of the most peaceful states in Nigeria.
The Canadian High Commissioner expressed surprise at the wonder of Ikogosi resort where warm and cold springs meet and a tree and another palm tree grow together from the same root without grafting; saying that “ I recommend this place for investors and everyone who loves the work of nature”.
Mr. Cooter also assured the state of the readiness of the University of Manitoba, Canada to partner with the Ekiti State University and College of Education Ikere- Ekiti so as to achieve the vision of the Institutions of becoming world-class.
Last modified: April 7, 2012