EKITI AIRPORT PROJECT. By Bunmi Awotiku.
On 11th April, 2019 from near and from afar came torrents of congratulatory messages to me for my appointment as The Project Coordinator, Ekiti Airport Project by His Excellency, Dr John Kayode Fayemi.
These goodwill messages later turned to skepticism, doubts and scorners went to town too. Oh Lo, JKF has offered Awotiku a, gba ma binu (consolatory) appointment. To me it was a challenge to write my name in GOLD. This is my determination and this I am going to hold on to , this I am going to do , this I am going to excel. Opportunity comes but once. You going for money and honour beckons on you, after wealth you naturally run after honour. On this note I stand.
Now comes the question, is Mr Governor ready or serious to have an Airport in Ekiti. To all doubting Thomas”s the visit of Mr Governor to The Minister of State for Aviation on Friday May 10 put paid to skepticism. Yet, doubters and scorners went to town.Makinde Araoye Twitter handle became their mecca. I want to leave that to the Strategic Communication unit of The Governor’s office to handle.
Let me share this good news further with you, Ekiti State Government has received in audience ,the officials of the Ministry of Transportation from Abuja with team members drawn from all relevant agencies. They visited the site on Thursday May 16.
Thereafter , the viability, need ability, necessary ability and important ability and other abilities became the sing song. I would be failing in my duties and obligations if I keep quiet amidst these tunes. Hence this small piece. I would appreciate its widest circulation pending responses from Public and Strategic Communication units of the government.
Firstly, note that governance is beyond meeting recurrent expenditure of government. The Awolowo era witnessed introduction of Television when we were ready to have it. That government went to establish the first government Secretariat instead of its scattering all over town. It was then a misplaced priority to build a stadium but hello,Awolowo did. It looks criminal to build a Cocoa house to the undiscerning mind but he went ahead to have it. Visionary leaders would do things beyond the ordinary. I am from that school of thought. Yes ,you may be right to call me a sycophant , thank you because I feel your vision is impaired. Martin Luther King had a dream. Now Bunmi Akanbi Awotiku is dreaming to midwife a thriving Airport in Ekiti. This challenge stands as a mountain but with the zeal, determination of the Captain of the Ship, Dr John Kayode Fayemi, it shall be made plain.
Is the Airport viable ? Yes. How ? A cargo Airport in Ekiti would be complimentary to what is on ground presently. Presently ? Yes. Ekiti is housing the Silo for the storage of grains and other agricultural products. It has capacity for 1000 Metric tonnes. First and only of its kind in South West. The largest thriving market of Yam is in Ekiti. The Ikole,Ipao,Odo Oro ,Ilasa Yam belt is waiting to be explored. Organic foods and vegetables are begging for organised market. For all these,Ekiti needs an Airport ,presumably a Cargo Airport. I want to justify my appointment ? Why not if not ? I see opportunities in the horizon.
For your information dear colleagues, the Ekiti Knowledge Zone is directly opposite the proposed Airport. The Federal Government rail line goes through the Airport site. Just in time ,the Ado circular road would be going through the Airport site.
JKF can never embark on projects that has no economic value. Oh you are asking about the Oke Ayoba Governor’s lodge. We need it for corporate marketing . You will be addressed the way you are dressed. We need it for image building of our government. We need to question the copycat that build a bridge to nowhere. He heard about it but unable to actualize the planned vision of an overhead bridge in Ekiti. The Eyiyato Pavilion was built to decongest usage of the stadium for commercial values to accommodate social functions that would fetch revenue for the State.
Ekiti Airport Project has come to stay. It is not going to serve as a drain not conduit pipe on the resources of the State. The Cargo Airport for the South West if I can remember was to be sited at Erunmu village on the way off Lalupon in the present Oyo state despite the fact that Ibadan Airport is in place.
I write herein so that skeptics can follow us and issue queries based on this submission when the time is rife. Together, the dream of a greater Ekiti of our dream is here. If we are not weary ,we shall see the goodness of God in Ekiti very soon.