Business Hilights
Tracking Nigeria's Headline Business News Online

Logistics in working out PPP slowing relocation of Computer Village to new site—Survey

Contrary to feelers that Lagos State Government may have abandoned its gazette move to relocate the famous Computer Village, Ikeja to a permanent site along Agbado/OkeOdo axis of Lagos State, the challenge of reviewing some understanding reached in 2009 when the deal was first struck is currently hampering the move.

The Computer Village, one of the biggest and highly patronized tech hubs for wide range of technology products in Nigeria, is situated in the heart of the state’s capital, Ikeja. The Ikeja Computer Village is also one of the biggest hubs for products parts, and repair of gadgets.

The challenge is due to observed changes in the values of critical indices and logistics needed for the takeoff and delivery of the multibillion naira scheme along Lagos-Abeokuta Road, Agbado.

But in the mind of the government, the plan is still alive as the original target of the relocation scheme is to decongest the capital of the state which is currently being made unlivable by traffic gridlock linked with the Computer Village market.

Additional reasons for the relocation include curbing environmental degradation, releasing scare housing stock and returning total traffic freedom back to the once state capital, Ikeja.

A deal sealed between the former administration of Governor Babatunde Fashola around March 2009, and the Computers And Allied Products Dealers Association of Nigeria (CAPDAN) was to perfect the relocation of the Market about nine months after, that is by December, but it failed due to funding differences.

Part of the deal was that the new market development will be financed under a well worked out Public Private Partnership (PPP) which was almost ready then, but was further delayed because of approaching elections in the market.

Some of the stakeholders who spoke to our correspondent weekend said the new administration in the market is likely going to dump all that was agreed by former Exco and start their own PPP afresh and this will tend to disrupt certain set structures planned to come with the market in 2009.

In another chat with a former social secretary of CAPDAN, Mr. Sunday Ogunfolaji, he recalled that the certificate of occupancy (C of O) of the land had already been acquired by members of Association.

He noted that “Under a Public Private Partnership (PPP), we intend to build almost 5000 offices and shops at the new site which will be called ‘ICT Enterprise Zone’. Presently, there are between 2, 000 to 2, 500 offices and shops in the Computer Village. With an average of about three persons to one office, the number of traders in the computer village would be at about 7, 000 persons. So the new site has excess capacity”.

Efforts to speak with one of the new Exco member of the current administration on the matter failed, thus raising additional anxiety on the internal political horse trading within CADPAN, the controlling association at the hub.