By Promise Emmanuel, Lokoja.
The Kogi State Economic Management Team, (KSEMT), under the leadership of Governor Yahaya Bello has successfully consummated a multi-billion Naira investment deal that will turn around the fortune of the state economy especially the hospitality and tourism sub sector.
This has led to the signing of agreement with an investor, Capital Boutique Limited to resuscitate and expand the state-owned moribund Confluence Beach Hotel, Lokoja.
The hotel have remained a shadow of itself due to mismanagement and maladministration of past governments in Kogi State.
It is expected that the entity, when completed, would have been transformed into a five star Hotel along with a Golf Course and resorts.
According to the Managing Director of Capital Boutique Limited, Mr Cyril Akika, the development of the Confluence Beach Facility is to include a nine hole Golf Course, blocks of 108 rooms, 158 chalets, an International Conference Centre, swimming pools and shopping areas in addition to the exist facilities.
He further stated that a total capital in excess of 5billion Naira will be injected into the first phase of the project.
The representative of the Governor on the Economic Management Team who also double as the State Auditor General, Alhaji Yakubu Okala, disclosed that the 25 year leasehold agreement will be managed by a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) company to be composed of representatives of the state and the core investors.
Alhaji Okala further revealed that the investment is capable of generating about 2000 jobs for the people of Kogi State. And that it will restore the tourism potential of the state to the good old days and improvement in the internally generated revenue (IGR).
The secretary of the team, who is also the Senior Special Assistant on World Bank Matters to the Governor of Kogi State, Aminu Ibrahim, disclosed that the investors are expected to commence work on the facility within the next ninety days following the execution of the agreement whilst total renovation is to be achieved within eighteen months.
In addition, a member of the Economic Team, Hon. Akoh Jacobs, the Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Commerce and Investment, revealed that the negotiations with the investor for the renovation and the management of the Confluence Beach Hotel which has been on for over six months is aimed at ensuring due diligence and to avoid mistakes of the past.
He further revealed that the State Economic Management Team is focused on deals majorly based on Public Private Partnership (PPP) in order to ensure rapid economic development of the state while soliciting other forms of investment in core areas where the state have comparative advantages, such as: Agriculture, Solid Mineral Mining and Oil exploration which has huge potential to upscale the state revenue, creates massive jobs and enhance trade and investments.