The Oyo State government has paid compensation to about 77 families whose lands were acquired recently for mass production of cassava in Otu, near Iseyin. The Commissioner for Lands, Housing, and Survey, Mr. Isaac Ajiboye Omodewu, presented the cheques to the beneficiaries at a brief ceremony in Otu, Itesiwaju Local Government Area of the state last week.
The commissioner, an indigene of Otu, lauded the governor for abiding by the law and demonstrating that the state believes in the peace and security of its citizens. He said: “It is the vision of the governor, Senator Abiola Ajimobi, to bring investors into the state. The community has agreed to release the land to the government and their compensations are being paid accordingly today.”
Mr. Wale Majolagbe, Director of Finance, Lexcel Group, and representative of Allied Atlantic Distilleries, one of the investors, said: “Since Oke-Ogun supplies most of the cassava we use, we decided to move to the 4,000 hectares of land available here for expansion. Activities will start on the land by the first week in April and the ethanol production plant will be ready in the next two years.”
Responding, the chairman, Itesiwaju Local Government, AbdulFatai Niyi Adeagbo, commended the governor for promptly paying compensation to owners of the acquired lands. He also counseled the beneficiaries to make judicious use of the fund. He assured the state government and the investor that the people in the community will work in close harmony with all stakeholders to guarantee the growth and development of the community.
Beyond the compensation and immediate employment of over 4,000 cassava farmers, when the ethanol plant is completed, it will reduce unemployment in the state be the catalyst for the growth and development of Otu and the Oke-Ogun area of the state.