In line with the directive of Governor Abiola Ajimobi of Oyo State that in order to ensure even development across local governments, there should be a collaborative effort between local government administrators and the private sector.
The partnership effort between Ona-Ara Local Government, Akanran and Ilaji Stadium and Resort Center has led to the first ever arrangement of grassroots sporting competition between a government establishment and a private enterprise in the history of the state.
Speaking at the opening ceremony of the sport festival, Engineer Dotun Sanusi, who is the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Ilaji Stadium and Resort Center, said that the initiative was as a result of persistent determination to give back to the society and the will to give hope to the downtrodden.
He noted that the aim of Ilaji Stadium and Resort Center was not to make profit alone but to take into cognizance the missing link in its immediate environment with the purpose of filling it.
Engineer Sanusi reiterated further that the establishment of Ilaji Farm and Ilaji Stadium and Resort Center was to curb rural urban migration particularly among youths in the agrarian suburb like Ona Ara as a result of lack of basic amenities with a view to engaging them productively and discover their hidden talents for the purpose of their individual and communal development.
While appealing to the state government through the Ministry of Youth and Sports to consider the Centre as an incubation center to scouting for talents, Engineer Dotun Sanusi expressed that the Ilaji Stadium and Resort Center has the best facilities to prepare athletes for national and international tournaments.
In his speech, the state Commissioner for Finance, who doubled as the Chairman of the occasion, Abimbola Adekanmbi, expressed his happiness and described the festival as a water-shed for sports, youth and community development.
While commending the owner of Ilaji Stadium and Resort Center for identifying that government alone cannot do it without the support of private sector, the Commissioner praised the organizers of the festival, stating that competitions like this would go a long way in redirecting youths away from social vices.
Mr. Abimbola Adekambi disclosed that Governor Abiola Ajimobi in his desire to support any developmental initiative has listed and approved Amuloko-Akanran-Ijebu-Road for rehabilitation.
Presenting his welcome address, Caretaker Chairman, Ona-Ara Local Givernment, Hon. Biliaminu Ogundele said that the partnership between the local government and Ilaji Stadium was aimed at providing an avenue where youths are engaged productively in sporting activities in order to make them healthy and learn to accept, detect and celebrate victory.
The council boss noted that the idea was in line with the vision of the present administration in the state under Senator Abiola Ajimobi, which is to engage in partnership with the private sector in order to develop the state.
The state Commissioner for Youth and Sports, Barrister Yomi Oke, former Commissioner for Education, Tokunbo Fayokun and Mr. Kola Bolomope, in their messages commended Engr. Dotun Sanusi and the organizers of the event for putting a well packaged sports festival in place to discover promising talents that will make name for the state at national and international tournaments.
In attendance was the father of Engineer Dotun Sanusi, Chief Ganiyu Sanusi, Mrs Joyce Belema Sanusi, former Commissioner for Trade, Commerce and Cooperative, Kazeem Adedeji, Special Adviser to the Governor on Youth and Sports, Bolaji Repete and former Ona-Ara council boss, Taiwo Oke.
Packaged by Kunle Gazali