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Niger Delta

Inflation: Delta To Review Contract Values Upward

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Delta State governor and Vice-Presidential Candidate of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Ifeanyi Okowa, has said that due to rising prices, it has become inevitable for government to review the value of contracts upward.
Okowa, who stated this during an interview with newsmen at Isheagu, said the inflationary trend informed the need for the recent review of costs of some ongoing projects in the State.
The governor, after inspecting ongoing construction of Isheagu-Ewulu road and bridge in Aniocha South Local Government Area of the State, said current economic indices in the country had taken negative tolls on every segment of activities and therefore, made review of the contracts’ values inevitable.
He said the road and bridge when completed, would serve two major agrarian communities of Isheagu and Ewulu.
The contract for the project, he said, was awarded in January 2021 and would be completed in December 2022, adding that 4.7-kilometre Isheagu section was already reconstructed.
He also said that from the bridge to Ewulu, another fresh section of 4.4 kilometres of road would be constructed.
“With what is going on in Nigeria now, the inflation rate is very high and it is affecting every other thing, particularly construction of infrastructure.
“Most of our contractors are actually struggling, so we had no option than to review the rate because inflation has risen as much as 18.6 per cent and that is actually affecting every aspect of life of the people.
“As regards the cost of construction, the high cost of diesel at the moment, asphalt, has also gone suddenly very high and of course, to drive most of the motorised equipment you require for construction work, you need a lot of diesel.
“The cost of rod has also gone up and it’s going up by the day. Unfortunately, beyond the global tendencies of Russia-Ukraine war, which has also devalued our Naira, making it to depreciate on daily basis, and this goes a long way to affect the original cost of contracts,” he said.
Okowa, who was conducted round the project by the Commissioner for Works (Highways and Urban Roads), Mr Noel Omodon, explained that government was left with no option than to review the cost of the projects to ensure their timely completion amid biting inflation.
“Having looked at everything, we needed to save the budget and the earlier we find a pathway to completing the projects the better. Otherwise, the escalation continues even more on a daily basis.
“So, it’s quite difficult and we wished we didn’t get into the kind of difficulties we are into, but we have no choice.
“We have started the projects and we have to complete them, otherwise the contractors will move out of site and when they move out, to remobilise is at a higher cost and we don’t want to go through that route at all.
“It’s a very unfortunate situation we find ourselves; it distorts our budgeting and we just hope that we are able to continue realigning our budget to keep pace with the construction that we are undergoing.
“Beyond having the infrastructure in place, it also creates jobs for our young ones and we cannot afford to have the contractors move out of site because it will mean that you are going to take food off the table of families, which is also not good for us.
“I have been informed that the project would be completed by the end of December.
“From what we are seeing, life is coming back to Isheagu from the excitement on the faces of the people because the road would help them to evacuate their farm produce,” Okowa said.
The Governor also inspected ongoing works at the Sector C1 of the Ughelli-Asaba Road by Obo River, where the contractor said the bridge construction would be completed in October while the road would be ready in December.

 

 

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Niger Delta

Ibom Developers Prioritise Health Through Medical Outreach Programmes In A’Ibom

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On February 6 and 7, 2024, Ibom Developers took a significant step towards improving the health and well-being of residents in the Ikot Okwo, Ikot Ikwot, and Ndauku communities of Ikot Abasi Local Government Area of Akwa Ibom State through its two-day comprehensive medical outreach programmes. Operating under the theme ‘Good Health Your Greatest Asset,’ the initiative’s primary goal is to facilitate the early resolution of community health issues, recognising the pivotal role that timely intervention plays in safeguarding the overall well-being of the community.
Good health is vital for the sustainable development of host communities, serving as a foundation for economic and social progress.
A healthy population is more productive, enabling greater workforce participation. Sound health reduces healthcare costs, encouraging economic stability. Socially, it enhances the quality of life, ensuring communities thrive.
Speaking at the events, Mrs. Dorothy Akpan Robert said, ‘‘Our community is grateful for this generous gesture, and we sincerely acknowledge Ibom Developers’ dedicated efforts and compassion. This initiative by the company empowers the community by fostering a culture of health consciousness and preventive care.’’
Public health involves preventing diseases, promoting health, educating communities, providing healthcare access, maintaining a healthy environment, and being prepared for emergencies. This helps build resilient communities, a priority for the company.
Also speaking, Chief Ukpe Uyo Amanama said, ‘‘Ibom Developers’ medical outreach programme is a testament to the transformative impact that community-driven health initiatives can have on the lives of individuals and the health landscape of a region.’’
The medical camps, conducted by Ibom Developers, targeted prevalent health concerns in the region, addressing key diseases that have a substantial impact on the communities, such as malaria, typhoid, blood pressure, cough, and skin rashes. Medical supplies were provided during the medical outreach programmes. Sugar tests were also conducted given the increasing rates of diabetes in the region. Those diagnosed were provided with guidance on lifestyle changes.
Dignitaries present at the programme were Mrs. Dorothy Akpan Robert – Women Leader, Ndauku Community; Prince Felix Albert – Vice Council Secretary, Ndauku Community; Chief Happy Negro Dickson – Compound Head of Dickson Family, Ndauku Community; Chief Akpan Amos – Compound Head of Ikot Esighe Family, Ndauku Community; Chief Akpan Amos – Compound Head of Ikot Esighe Family, Ndauku Community; Chief Ufot Frank Udoekpo – Compound Head of Udoekpo Family, Ndauku .

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Niger Delta

Edo Labour Party Aspirant Writes INEC Over Party Congress

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Labour Party (LP )aspirant for the Edo State governorship election, Olumide Akpata has said the political party is not ready for its primary poll.
The former President of the Nigerian Bar Association, (NBA), said this in a letter dated February 18 and addressed to Mahmood Yakubu, Chairman of the Independent National ELectoral Commission (IINEC) and alleged that the party leadership is plotting to handpick a candidate for the election.
It would be noted that the Labour Party had initially fixed February 22 as the date for the conduct of its primary but later shifted it to February 23.
The letter reads, “i write to you in my capacity as an aspirant for the Edo State gubernatorial ticket on the platform of the Labour Party.
“The purpose of this letter is to bring to your attention the lack of preparedness and transparency surrounding the labour party’s planned primaries to produce a gubernatorial candidate for the forthcoming gubernatorial elections in edo state.
“As you are aware, the Electoral Act 2022 mandates political parties to conduct transparent primaries to produce candidates and also mandates the Independent National Electoral Commission (“INEC” or “the commission”) to stipulate timelines for conducting these primaries.
“Numerous aspirants, including myself, have observed with dismay the conspicuous absence of transparency in the process, which has led to a mass exodus of aspirants from the race.
“All of the aspirants, without exception, who have withdrawn from the process so far, have voiced concerns about its undemocratic nature.
“While some have diplomatically cited “personal reasons” for withdrawing, others have been more forthcoming in directly alleging that the party leadership plans to handpick a preferred aspirant regardless of the outcome of any primaries held.”
Akpata added that his attempts to get the leadership of the party to provide accountability fell on deaf ears.
“I have become constrained to speak out at this point because my repeated attempts to get the party leadership to see reason and provide transparency around preparations for the primaries have failed to elicit any positive response.
“Rather, my candid inquiries have been met with disdain and an attempt to bully me into silence.
“I am aware that INEC has demonstrated courage in the past to stand on the side of due process in political parties and entrench internal party democracy. the LP’s primaries in Edo State provide you with another opportunity to walk the talk.
“Mr Chairman, if things go awry, it could result in pre-election disputes to which INEC will inevitably be joined as a necessary party, thereby tying down its already meagre resources and leaving the commission to grapple with yet another unnecessary and avoidable display that could have been averted had the right thing been done and the warning signs heeded.”

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Niger Delta

Gunmen Shoot Dead Councillor In Delta As Police Launch Manhunt

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A Councillor representing Owhase Ward in the Udu Local Government Area Legislative Council, Delta State, identified as Honourable Festus, has been shot dead by unknown gunmen.
The Tide’s source gathered that the councillor was shot in the head by gunmen on Monday at his residence.
The source who confirmed the incident to our source said his death was related to cult activities.
The State Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), DSP Bright Edafe, who also confirmed the incident stated that the police had begun intense discreet investigation and manhunt of the assailants.
“Yes one Festus was shot on his head by unknown assailants, the wife informed the brother. We are searching for his killers,” Edafe said.

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