Hydroelectric Power Producing Development Commission (HYPPADEC) has awarded a contract sum do N220 million for the construction of a water channel at Kotonkarfe, to mitigate against floods in the area.
The Managing Director of the Commission, Alhaji Abubakar Sadiq Yelwa, made the disclosure on Thursday in Kotonkarfe at a ceremony to hand over the site to the contractor.
The Managing Director stated that the decision of the commission to de-silt and to concrete plain the 500 meters seasonal stream was borne out of the appeal by the community of the danger and hardship faced by the people and traveling public as a result of yearly flooding of the Akpankiti stream, that runs through the community.
He said, the Commission after due consultation with the stakeholders, swung into action and awarded the construction of the channel to Atimpsuda Integrated Services at the cost of N220m.
He added that the project will be completed in Eight weeks.
He said 120 meters be concrete drains while culverts would be constructed where necessary.
He promised to construct a special refuse dump for the community to avoid littering the channel with disposables causing blockage to the waterway.
” We are here today as a result of our previous visit to this community. When we came, we went around the town and the community complained of the need to open up this place( stream) to prevent frequent floods affecting the drains at the Kotonkarfe end of the Abuja Lokoja highway.
” We quickly organised stakeholders’ meeting, we saw the major problems causing the flooding, which is overstocking the drains and when the waterways are blocked, it is natural that the water will find another way which may cause havoc to the people.
” We, then agreed to construct a modern To Go channel and de-silt some Good in Eight weeks.”He noted.
He warned residents to desist from disposing of wastes into the channel, which has largely responsible for blockage to the system, thereby affecting the free flow of water.
In a remark, the Paramount ruler, the Ohimege Igu of Kotonkarfe, Alhaji Abdulrazaq Isah Koto commended the management and staff of the commission for their relentless efforts in providing solutions facing his kingdom.
He added that in recognition of the contribution of the chairman of the commission to the people of his kingdom, the chiefs in the council approved the award of the traditional title of “Garkuwa of Igu kingdom with the salutation of Daudu”.
He lamented that any time the rainy season is setting in, the people will be in fear, not knowing what nature hold in stock for them, as most of their sources of livelihood and property would be washed away year in and year out, saying, the intervention has given hope to his people, that after all, they may have a reprieve from the recurring flooding.
Those in attendance in the handing over of the site to the contractor include Alhaji Ozi Salami, Board member of the commission, Kogi state commissioner for Environment, Victor Omofaiye and Samson Bako commissioner for works and Kogi State Coordinator of the commission, Engineer Joan Oguche, Chairman of Kogi Kotonkarfe Local Government Council and others.
Recall, that last year, ten local Government areas in Kogi were submerged with Kogi Kotonkarfe LGA as one of the worst hit.