…..He is a man whom people should benefit from his faculty, says Governor
Lagos State Governor, Mr Babatunde Fashola (SAN) on Thursday extolled the virtues of the President of the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Mr Goodie Ibru as he marked 70 years, saying he is a man that should not only be celebrated but one whom people should benefit from his faculty of enterprise.
Governor Fashola who spoke at the Nigerian Institute of International Affairs, Victoria Island, venue of the public presentation of the book titled: “Goodie Minabo Ibru, A life of Service and Enterprise” written by Layi Ajani said Mr Goodie Ibru, who is Chairman of the Ikeja Hotels owners of Lagos Sheraton Hotel, Ikeja stands out as a man who created jobs when his peers were thinking about getting a job.
“That is the kind of entrepreneurial spirit that this country is in dire need of today; those who would build the local capital that will propel us to the prosperity that we seek. The Europeans have gone and all of the capitals they built they have taken away”.
“So, if you are a graduate of business administration, what business are you going to administer if the business has gone? So, all of us now have to wear faculties and caps of business creators. That is where Mr Goodie Ibru and the Ibru family must be celebrated in no small way for venturing with courage to invest in this economy when it was the past time of the colonial administrators”, the Governor stated.
Governor Fashola said while some people who have been opportuned have decided to stash away their resources and funds in foreign countries where it cannot benefit the average people, the likes of Mr Goodie Ibru have given the people the chance to benefit from it.
The Governor stressed that Nigeria is just coming on its own as builders of capital, adding that the generation ahead of the present one and the present one were prepared to simply manage capital as the mantra was that you just go to a university, get a degree and you will get a job.
He noted that the celebrant has lent his support for good governance to every government in Lagos in which he has served by standing up for what government could do better.
Governor Fashola declared, “Mr Ibru is a man who stands for good governance not based on personal benefit, providing support, standing up to acknowledge what government does that is beneficial and also standing up to suggest what government can do better”.
The Governor who also spoke on the development of tourism said while there is the need to do more in the sector, it should be noted that tourism is about destination which requires not only hotels which are critical services for tourism but very good roads, fast trains and reliable ferries.
“If a destination which should take 30 minutes end up taking five hours, the tourist may make the mistake of coming once but would not recommend it to anyone after that. So those are the things that stand in the way of the unleashing of our tourist possibilities and this explains why we are opening up Badagry, Lekki and Ikorodu simultaneously because those are where our tourist potentials are”, he explained.
Also speaking, the Deputy Governor of Delta State, Professor Amos Utuama (SAN) who represented the State Governor, Dr Emmanuel Uduaghan described Mr Goodie Ibru as a man with a knack for excellence.
He added that Mr Goodie Ibru, who is also a distinguished author, is one of the greatest supporters of the present administration in Delta State adding that the administration would always be delighted to celebrate him.
The Chief Presenter of the book, Senator Azu Agboti, described Mr Goodie Ibru as a businessman who has made remarkable exploits in the hospitality business and succeeded in placing Nigeria as a tourism destination.
He added that his successful foray into the sector has encouraged a lot of businessmen who know their onions to now seek to invest in hotels and hospitality business.
A former Commissioner in Lagos State who chaired the occasion, Chief Olawale Cole described the celebrant as a worthy Nigerian entrepreneur who is worthy of being celebrated by all standards.
He said at a time when many take delight in dipping their hands into public purse to enrich themselves, Mr Goodie Ibru despite his affluent background, still adopted hardwork and honesty in all his business dealings.
He said for the over three decades that he has known Mr Ibru, “he has been a shining example of everything altruistic about a businessman”.
The event was attended by many notables including the siblings of Mr Goodie Ibru, like former Delta State Governor, Olorogun Felix Ibru, elder statesman, Deacon Gamaliel Onosode, former Managing Director of Guinness Nigeria, Dr Abel Ubeku and several other guests.