The Ooni of Ife, Ooni Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi, Ojaja II has established a business partnership with an Arab billionaire, Sharif Ahmad Bin Jaber Al Natour to create massive job opportunities for the Nigerian youth.
The partnership between Ooni Ogunwusi and the Jordanian business mongul and philantropist was formally announced during an unveiling ceremony that took place at the Ile-Oodua palace in Ile-Ife on Monday during which they both singed a Memorandum of Understanding(MOU).
The Ooni also accompanied the Jordanian prince to meet with President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday.
The Morocco-based businessman owns Global Trade and Development Corporation(GTDC) group. He is in Nigeria on a 3-day visit to explore areas of possible collaboration.
GTDC recently disbursed US$800m fund for commercial ventures in livestock, sugar and sugarcane in North Central Timor Global conglomerate.
Al Natour said he visited the Ooni because of the king’s efforts in unifiying the Africans in Diaspora through his peace and unity agenda. He further stated his commitment to build green cities in Nigeria under the auspices of GDTC Investment Nigeria Limited as a collective instrument of social, humanitarian, industrial and commercial projects for the benefit of Nigerians.
“I have met many kings and world leaders but Ooni of Ife dazzles me most. I love him so much. I follow his activities a lot. He goes around the world to unify Africans in Diaspora through his peace and unity agenda. I also love his youth development quest.
“That is why I am here at Ile-Ife to partner with him on green energy and green enviroment for the benefit of the good people of Yoruba and Nigeria.” Al Natour said
Describing Ile-Ife as home, he said that with the MoU, the technological hub in its first phase is expected to facilitate massive employment of youths in Nigeria.
He added: “I have built schools, hospitals and houses around 168 countries in six continents of the world. My focus now is to come home which is Ile-Ife where the day dawn and I am here to partner with this globally respected monarch who preaches peace around the globe.
“Ooni is not just my business partner, he is also my father who has assured me of his unflinching support to invest heavily in the continent in the area of agriculture and renewable energy technology that will promote international trade in Africa.” Al Natoir said.
Ooni Ogunwusi while signing the MOU expressed optimism that the project would spur development across Nigeria and Africa at large. He explained that his partnership with the international business magnate was fastracked to ensure that the success of the project can start benefiting the teeming unemployed youths as soon as possible.
“I am very proud to be associated with the new birth of GDTC investment in Nigeria. I will work with you on a very long time basis not on a short time basis”
“We need a lot of investments to make sure that things are properly done in this part of the world. We need a lot of private and public partnership for large transactions.
“We need to provide jobs for the youth. We need to provide a lot of humanitarian services for them. We need to also see how to reform the mindset of our youth very positively”
“I am so impressed with the green energy and green city you want to partner with us which will help our teeming young people to be gainfully employed.
“We are blessed in Nigeria to have a philanthropist like you who wants to start his philanthropic works in our country starting from this kingdom of Ile-Ife which is the traditional home for the Yoruba people and which is the source of your forefathers too.”
The Ooni who is co-chairman of National Council of Traditional Rulers of Nigeria said the country needs a lot of public private partnership (PPP) to boost its economy.
GDTC is a global company with presence in over 176 countries of the world with immense investment in human development and infrastructural facilities.