Oyo govt signs N8bn MOU for rehabilitation of Agbowo complex

THE Oyo State government on Wednesday signed an N8bn Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with a consortium of investors, Agbowo Mall infrastructure Development Company Limited, for the remodelling, redeveloping and rehabilitation of the Agbowo shopping complex.

The Secretary to Oyo State government Mr Olalekan Alli, while speaking at the signing ceremony, which took place at the Governor’s Office, Ibadan, said that the action of the state government is to give the complex a befitting outlook that would meet international standards with ultra-modern facilities that will promote and accelerate business activities in the state.

Alli noted that the negotiation with the investors did not exclude the former occupants who were also present at the signing of the MOU, stressing that the former occupants would also be given adequate consideration when the complex is ready for allocation.

“We are trying to shift our strategy from direct applications in our developmental projects to collaborate with investors to redevelop all the moribund outfits fully owned by the government and managed by the Housing Corporation. We believe that we have to do things in modern fashion to ensure that people have access to international facilities in their buying and selling activities in line with the government’s agenda in ensuring the elimination of street trading.

“The idea is to redevelop and remodel shopping centres of this nature. This will enable the masses to flow along with their counterparts in the developed country. The previous occupants of the various outlets of the shopping complex are here with us and we appreciate their support and understanding. We assure them that they will be given priority during allocations after the completion of the project,” Alli explained.

The representative of the investors, Mr Tunde Shonekan, said that the rehabilitation of the entire complex would take about 30 months before completion, adding that, they were ready to invest the sum of N8billion into the project.

According to him, “our aim is to redevelop the complex that was built in 1984 to a modern one. Despite the economic challenges in the country, we are confident that we will transform the complex. We are investing N8billion in order to give it a befitting outlook and we want all the stakeholders of this project to cooperate with us.

In his own speech at the MoU signing, the General Manager, Oyo State Housing Corporation, Mr Adekunle Olajire, expressed delight at the development in the shopping complex, stating that the development would help to boost the economy of the state.

He said that the corporation met the previous occupants, who also witnessed the signing of the MoU, and they have been given two weeks to vacate the premises for immediate development by the investors.