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“it’s surprising Makinde pays salaries despite economic hardship” – Alaafin

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Ojo Peter, Ibadan

The Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Olayiwola Adeyemi 111, has expressed surprise that Governor Seyi Makinde promptly pays salaries of workers in the state at a time the entire country is experiencing economic turmoil.

Oba Adeyemi expressed the surprise and commendation, on Wednesday, while receiving the delegation of the state government, led by the Special Adviser to Governor Seyi Makinde on Tourism and Culture, Hon. Ademola Ige, in his palace.

The delegation was at the king’s palace to receive royal blessings prior to the take-off of data gathering of members of Ofi Weavers and Marketers Association, in Oyo town, towards the disbursement of loans under the micro-lending financial support programme of Sterling Bank Plc.

He stated that aside from the timely payment of workers’ salaries, other various enviable developmental projects, like the newly commissioned Akesan Ultra-modern Market and others embarked upon by the governor around the state, had singled him out as top tier leader among his equals in the country.

Alaafin described the initiative by the government as a good move to empower weavers and marketers of Aso Oke, and to further expose their products to the outside world.

Oba Adeyemi, however, charged the parties involved to be partners in progress for the programme to see the light of the day.

Hon. Akeem Ademola Ige had earlier disclosed that the essence of the visit was to intimate the monarch about the initiative of the government and to receive his royal blessings towards the success of the programme.

He said the programme was part of Governor Makinde’s initiative to empower the local entrepreneurs, in order to showcase their products to the outside world, adding that the loan was a soft one which would not involve any collateral whatsoever.

The delegation later moved to the Atiba Town Hall where members of the association were addressed and their profiling was carried out by the staff of the Sterling Bank Plc, led by its Regional Manager, Ms Funke Usalum, and other top officials of the bank.

Also in his remark, the Chairman of Oyo East Local Government Area, Hon. Saheed Arowosaye, said the loan when disbursed, would have a tremendous impact on the business of members of the association who had been facing financial challenges to boost their productivity before now.

The chairperson of Atiba LGA, Hon. Kafilat Olakojo, also lauded Governor Makinde for bringing dividends of democracy to the people of Oyo town, especially the traders.

Hundreds of beneficiaries of the programme, who could not hide their joy, appreciated the state government for facilitating the loan package for them.

The association promised to compensate Governor Makinde and his party, PDP, with massive votes during the 2023 general elections.

The Chairman of Ofi Weavers and Marketers Association, Oyo Zone, Mr Raheem Abimbola Waliu, expressed gratitude to Oyo State government and Sterling Bank Plc for the rare opportunity, and assured them that the loan would be judiciously used for the purpose it was meant.

Among the government delegates who accompanied Hon. Ademola Ige were Economic Adviser to the Governor, Professor Musbau Babatunde; Special Assistant on Community Relations, Femi Josiah; Special Assistant on OYSIEC Matters, Innocent Tallest, and a member of the Oyo State Tourism Board, Miss Serah Sobowale.

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