A contractor, Mr Olufemi Oniyide, have accused the governor of Oyo State, Seyi Makinde, and the state Government of copyright infringement and stealing of intellectual property.
According to the contractor, he submitted a proposal on management of parks and garages in the state and was told that he’d be contacted to carry out the construction of the gardens, but was neglected while the government went ahead to use his proposal for the Oyo State Parks and Garages.
He said, “I wrote a proposal on parks and garages and submitted it through the office of the Chief of Staff to the governor.
“I later learnt that the proposal had been submitted to the Committee for Works and Transportation led by Prof Raphael Afonja.
“I was contacted on phone by someone who knew I submitted the proposal and he told me he was with Prof Afonja and that I should speak with him. I spoke on the phone with Afonja and he asked me for a further summary of the project which he told me not to put on a letterhead paper. I was wary of doing that. But our mutual acquaintance encouraged me to do so and I sent a two page summary which Prof Afonja promised to present at the state executive meeting and specifically instructed me to indicate in the summary that there were other consultants so that Governor Seyi Makinde can instruct him to pick one of the consultants which will be us. All this was over phone.
“Soon, I was no more receiving information on the proposal from the person who introduced me to the commissioner.
“On January 5, I visited Prof Afonja in his office (I had not met him before then). He instructed me and our company’s Managing Director to go to Bureau of Internal Revenue to check whether the proposal had been passed to them. We went and were told the proposal had been passed since October 19, 2019.
“On January 6, 2020 we came back to Prof Afonja’s office and he reluctantly attended to us after waiting for hours. He told us what a beautiful proposal we had submitted. He said it was novel but unfortunately the man at BIR was appointed with the Chief of Staff some months before them and that they may have “given” the proposal to another consultant to implement.
“I asked him: “another consultant to implement what’s not their idea ?”. He went on to insinuate that our mutual acquaintance was not someone we should have liased with to follow up our proposal. He called the BIR man in our presence and told us he’s not picking. So, he gave us his United States phone number for us to chat on Whatsapp. He said he’ll look into whether the proposal had not been given out. We exchanged pleasantries and left.
“Around 3am on January 7, he informed us via Whatsapp that the proposal had been given out to another consultant. At a time when I chatted with him that we may approach the court, he chatted that they’re considering breaking the implementation of the proposal into zones and I agreed with him for our proposal indicated it’s going to be split into local governments.
“Thereafter we heard nothing from him again until we read in the newspapers that the Oyo State Government was implementing the Park Management System and doing away with the National Union of Road Transport Workers.”