Remarks By The Governor Of The State Of Osun, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, At The Formal Commissioning Of Omoluabi Garment Factory, Held At The Factory Premises Along Gbongan-Ibadan Road, Abere, On Monday August 26, 2013
I want to begin by thanking the Almighty God for His mercy and blessing on our state, and for giving us the capability to think, plan, act and to accomplish much for our people within a short time.The purpose of our gathering here today marks another great step forward for us as a people in the State of Osun. It is another landmark event in our long record of achievements in the short period that we have been in office. We are here gathered to formally commission the Omoluabi Garment Factory situated close to us at the seat of government.
The establishment of this factory became necessary as part of our overall effort to transform our state. Before we came into government, we had conceived of an overall blueprint for the transformation of the state. This development plan was designed to touch the most critical areas of our economy and society. As encapsulated in the Six-Point Integral Action Plan, one of the central foci of our transformation programme is to promote functional education in the state.
Consequently, on assumption of office we immediately organised an education summit that came up with a master plan for the overhauling of our public school system in Osun.
The education transformation plan has different components which include, among others, O’Schools, O’MEALS, O’Uniform, O’Calisthenics and the E-learning project. As part of the reorganisation of the education system, it was decided that all the pupils in the public school system should have the same school uniform. This decision was made with the aim of giving them a common identity and purpose, as well as a sense of unity and pride, which had been lost in the decay that set in public schools in Osun before our coming.
Because all the different programmes in our development plan are integrated with one another, we designed the school uniform with the full participation of all the key stakeholders in education so that it would be consistent with our policy of promoting religious and communal harmony in the state. Likewise the O’Uniform was also conceived to dovetail into other development goals of our administration, such as banishing poverty, hunger and unemployment.
Thus, the uniform was designed by our people, with a choice of batik that is produced in the state. We have since supplied 750,000 of this uniform to all our public school pupils free-of-charge. Through this alone, we have provided job opportunities for our market women who supplied the materials for the uniform and about 3,000 tailors who sewed them. But that is not the end of the story.
With the knowledge that the school uniforms will only last for a while and, hence, will require continuous replacement, we have decided to maximise the economic opportunities that this would offer for the benefit of our people. This Omoluabi Garment Factory that we are commissioning today is a product of the policy to reap the economic benefits of the production of the school uniform. This factory will henceforth produce the school uniform here; it will employ our people here; it will buy its inputs from here, and the batik it will produce will be sewn by our tailors here. All of these, among other gains, will have numerous spin-offs that will redound to the advantage of the people of the State of Osun. The uniform material will be sold and sewn at control prices so as to make it affordable for our people. You are not only assured of quality, you will get it at god prices.
And as you all know, this is just one of the factories that have been brought into existence through our education revitalisation project. Another factory will, in a short time, in Ilesa, begin the production of the e-learning tablet, Opon-Imo, and other electronic gadgets.
This garment factory is one testimony of our investment drive and our commitment to attracting investors to our state. We have the market and the human and material resources. As a government, we are most willing to provide the enabling environment in infrastructure and security needed for thriving economic activities.
I want to charge the managers of this factory to be innovative and be uncompromisingly committed to quality. This might appear to be a small beginning, but what I am seeing is the onset of a giant clothing industry that will take the nation and West Africa by storm in the foreseeable future.
We will remain resolutely focused on the implementation of our policies, with the assurance that our people will be the better for it.
I thank you all for granting me audience.
Osun a dara!