Sunkanmi Owoyemi is one of the Directors at Sunbeth Global Concept. In this interview with Topshot, he shared his business experience during COVID-19, the need for people to stay safe and his assessment of the present government in Ondo State. Excerpts:
Sir, what is your reaction to government lifting of ban on business premises?
The lifting of the ban is a welcome development though if they say we should still maintain the lockdown, we will obey because health comes first. Without good health, you cannot do anything. It is someone who is healthy that can lodge in a hotel. Government has put measures in place to follow to keep people safe and we will continue to observe all that. In truth, it wasn’t easy through that period because we have to pay salaries at the end of the day without income and that hurts. We are hoping that the trend of the COVID19 will go down.
How did you manage the pandemic as an businessman?
This COVID19 affected out cocoa business in a serious way but thank God the government reduced the interest on some of the loans we are using for our business. We known its for a short time but we take solace in the fact that health is wealth. Once everything is fine, things will pick up again. We will continue to ensure our staffs are paid and in our own way, we supported the government in our own way. We gave out palliatives at our level too.
What is your message to the people generally?
My message is that people should try and stay safe because people are dying of this COVID19-it is not a rumour. Our prayer is that the trend will go down. We will not be a parktaker of this evil and as such, I urge the people to take precaution. If you don’t need to go out, don’t.
As a young man, do you have plans to venture into politics?
People have told me that but in truth, I was involved with APC at some points but now I have a plan but I don’t think I will go through with the plan if I cannot effect change. I can only do politics in a place where I can effect change. If they are not willing for a change, there is no need for me to go there, I would rather stay in the private sector. The only reason I would love to go into politics is not because of money but for impact. Take for instance, the way our education system is – it shouldn’t be that way. People are not learning. It is not quality education we attain in our schools. I will effect change most especially in that area
What is your assessment of the Gov. Akeredolu led government in Ondo State?
Aketi’s government has done well. See all the roads. The truth is that they gave birth to me in Akure and I have seen so much development coming from Gaga, to Oke Ogba, Odo Ijoka, Hospital road. Look at Ore and Owo town, the seaport Ondo. If that seaport works, our business in this state will do very well. What I have seen is that he has tried his best. What matters is infrastructure. The people in Gaga now can just drive down without issues on their road.
At High court road, one can now have space to park. These roads are opening up the state to investment and time will tell. The infrastructures will aid development. See the revenue house the the government built, we deserve something like that in this state. We need to stand tall among other States. It takes a serious government to attain all these. Everything might not be right now, but if with continuity for 8 years, I think all will be well. I think the government has done well.. The people that will not vote for Aketi are the ones that did not get money from his government but in terms of work, he has done well.