The Kogi Government through the Nigeria Erosion Watershed Management Project (NEWMAP) has issued cheques payment as compensation to over 250 Project Affected Persons (PAP) at Adumu gully erosion sites in Ogugu Local Government Area.
Mr Edward Onoja, the Chief of Staff to Gov. Yahaya Bello, who spoke on behalf of the governor in Ogugu, thanked the people of the community for their patience and endurance.
Onoja reiterated that Bello’s administration had taken the welfare of the people as number one priority, stressing the need for the people to give the governor their total support.
He urged the beneficiaries to make judicious use of the money to support their businesses and livelihood, while urging Kogi NEWMAP to kick start the project in earnest.
Earlier, the state Project Coordinator of NEWMAP, Mrs Ladi Ahmed-Jato, while handing over the cheques to the beneficiaries, said that the construction would start immediately after the compensation.
“We are mindful of the fact that after compensation, we will move into site immediately; otherwise the people will go back to the area. So, we’ll move to site immediately,” she said.
She added that the people of Adumu community were so lucky to benefit from the intervention, saying many other vulnerable communities in the state had been yearning for the same opportunity.
She, therefore, urged the community to cooperate with the contractor that had been mobilized to site for the civil work, noting that all the affected persons by the project were captured by a World Bank certified consultant.
On his part, the Commissioner for Environment and Natural Resources, Mr Sanusi Yahaya, thanked the state government for the payment of its counterpart fund of N900 million for erosion control in the state.
While attributing the event as historic and symbolic, Yahaya emphasized that the agency would immediately move into the site to remedy the degradation.
The Traditional Ruler, Eje Olamaboro, Chief Simon Ujah, thanked the state government, World Bank, NEWMAP for bringing the community to limelight with her project to lift the community out of erosion menace.
Mrs Rachael Adejoh, who spoke on behalf of the beneficiaries, thanked the state government and NEWMAP for fulfilling their promise, promising that they would to utilise the money given to them judiciously.