Delta State Governor, Ifeanyi Okowa, has harped on the need for host communities of Independent Power Plants in the country to be first line beneficiaries of the projects.
Speaking on Friday in Asaba when he received in audience top management of Nigerian Agip Oil Company [NAOC] and stakeholders from Okpai Community in Ndokwa East Local Government Area, Okowa urged companies to always engage their host communities proactively.
This is to ensure peace and reduce agitations and confrontations.
The governor expressed satisfaction with NAOC’s plan to construct two sub-stations at Okpai and Kwale aimed at providing adequate electricity supply to both communities.
He sued for cooperation and support from all stakeholders.
“The community is important to the implementation of projects as we need peaceful environment for investments to take place.
“This project is being designed in the best possible way this time around to deliver over 450 mega watts of electricity.
“Apart from generation, they are also requesting land for sub-stations in Okpai and Kwale; we thank God for that because it will enable us to have power being evacuated to meet with the needs of the immediate environment.
“I want to appreciate this level of planning which will help to reduce all forms of restiveness, and help to improve on the community-company relationship”, he said.
Okowa urged the communities to support the early delivery of the project.
“We need the cooperation of all in the state to be able to deliver the project on time, I want to thank you for accepting to provide land for the project and appeal to you to give maximum cooperation to the company to achieve the set goals.”
Earlier, Mr. Dennis Masi, Stakeholders Management and Community Development Division Manager, NAOC, said that they were in Asaba to solicit the support of the state government on the construction of the 530 megawatts Phase II Independent Power Plant [IPP] in Okpai.
He added that they were also there to formally present the contractor for the project, SAIPEM CO, to the government and the community.
He assured that every stakeholder would be carried along in the construction.
He explained that there would be two 132 KVA sub-stations being designed by the Transmission Company of Nigeria [TCN] in Okpai and Kwale to serve the communities as part of the project.
Fred Okwuezolu, Chairman, Okpai Community Development Committee, who spoke on behalf of the community thanked Governor Okowa for the meeting and promised to support the project.