The New Direction government of Gov. Yahaya Bello has been described as phenomenal in the areas of rural development.
Hon. Daniel Oneal Ejigbo, Kogi State Rural Development Commissioner made the revelation in a chat with Thenigerianpost on Thursday.
According to the Commissioner, the present administration has been outstanding in rural development, says “We’ve spent about N2 billion on the Project Light Up Kogi East thus far with the project solely funded 100% by the government of Gov. Yahaya Bello.
Hon. Daniel Oneal Ejigbo, in the interview with the Nigerianpost, says the much talked about Project Light Up Kogi East which is one of the rural development projects of the present administration widely celebrated has the propensity to cause an industrial revolution of the state.
According to the Rural Development Commissioner, the present administration more than any other before it has done more excellently well in rural development, however, says ” we’re talking so much about PLUKE because of the socio-economic impact it is doing to a whole Senatorial District that has longed been neglected by previous administration’s.
Asked what the future holds for rural development in the state and what should the people of Kogi East be expecting in terms of rural development with PLUKE,
Hon. Daniel Oneal Ejigbo, says the project will include the reinforcement of the electricity infrastructure in the area, which will include installation of distribution of substations in 24 towns and villages; construction of High Tension and Low Tension Lines.
The N2b Operation Light Up Kogi East project the Commissioner also disclosed encompasses the upgrading of Itobe Bridge Cable by crossing 150mm x 1 Core Cable to 300mm x Core cable from Ajaokuta across the River Niger to the region.
The 300mm cable he added has the capacity to carry 45 MW load at maximum, says with an entire load of Kogi East currently put at 25MW, the project represents the future expansion and development of the senatorial district and state.
Another area of interest of the PLUKE project is that the existing cable that has the loading capacity of 14.5 MW. This he said is the obvious reason responsible for the load shedding in Idah and Anyigba axis which he noted has been corrected by Gov. Yahaya Bello with PLUKE.
According to Hon. Daniel Oneal Ejigbo, the PLUKE Implementation Committee is made up of five members namely: Hon. Deedat Salami- (Chairman), Daniel Oneal Ejigbo (Secretary), Yakubu Okala, Ahmed Ododo, and Engr. Mohammed, expressed satisfaction that the project which is a jinx breaker, has attained 40% success thus far, says over the years, the major problem of Kogi East is Power, explained that it would now be a thing of the past courtesy of Gov. Yahaya Bello.
As part of other achievements of the present administration in Rural Development, Hon. Daniel Oneal Ejigbo, reiterated that the problem that has limited Development in Kogi East is Power, disclosed that within the last two months he has gotten approval for some communities around Kogi East Senatorial District for the construction of Mini-grid.
According to Hon. Daniel Oneal Ejigbo, ” I have also been in talks with Dr. Sanusi Ohiare of the Rural Electrification Agency for the construction of mini-grid electrification around Kogi State particularly in communities that are far away from the national grid”. said the projects are self-sustaining.
He listed Ogbabede, Oganenigu, Emewe Ogane, Ofojo Emewe, Ojubogwu ( Okenyi ), Ayah, and Emi-Daley as the communities for the construction of Mini-grid.
The Commissioner expressed joy that Gov. Yahaya Bello singled him out and gave him a chance from a population of over 2.5 million people from Kogi East, to be part of the history of rewriting the long neglect of Kogi East, says he remains eternally indebted and grateful to Gov. Yahaya Bello.
Hon. Daniel Oneal Ejigbo, mentioned funding as a global challenge but says through careful planning and methodology he is optimistic that, ” Very shortly, ” We are moving to Adavi -Eba in Kogi State Central and we are also trying to connect the parts of Kogi West that is on 11kva to 33kva so as to boost the electricity supply of the western flank”, says when that is done we would across the state have improved power to quicken socio-economic development.
Towards having sustainability in the rural power supply, Hon. Daniel Oneal Ejigbo, says, ” that’s why we are in collaboration with AEDC for consultancy and for technical advice”.
He further disclosed that ” We have a rural access and marketing Programme called (RAAMP) in partnership with the world bank which Kogi State has paid its own counterpart fund 100% awaiting the part of the world bank”.
The Rural Development Commissioner disclosed further that with RAAMP, the state would be able to connect the rural people completely to the national economy and the world says the state has created the enabling environment for the investors through GYB’s constant pragmatic approach to security.
The plans to develop the rural areas of Kogi State by Gov. Bello, the Rural Development Commissioner explained is enormous, says beginning with rural electrification, road construction, river crossing, to mention just but a few, says, “Gov. Yahaya Bello is bent on turning Kogi State into an Economic hub and electricity is key to achieving that goal”.