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HYPREP Set To Begin Ogoni Power Project Construction

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The Hydrocarbon Pollution Remediation Project (HYPREP) is now ready to commence the construction of its power project in Ogoniland in Rivers State, with an appeal to the people of the area to give their maximum cooperation and support to the project.
The Project Coordinator of HYPREP, Dr Ferdinand Giadom, who gave this indication during a sensitisation workshop on the power project at the council secretariat of Gokana Local Government Area in Kpor on Monday said the power project is an initiative of HYPREP, an addition to the Ogoni Specialist Hospital, both of which are not spelt out in the UNEP Report but conceptualised as a boost and extra to the deliverables of HYPREP to the people of Ogoniland.
As a boost, he noted, the power project will provide sustainability to the project’s water schemes, the livelihood training, the operationalisation of the Centre of Excellence in Environmental Restoration and the Ogoni Specialist Hospital, approved by HYPREP’s Governing Council to be included in the deliverables of the project.
Giadom disclosed that President Muhammadu Buhari has given approval for the take-off of the power project, a gesture which he said has demonstrated that the President is both a father and friend to the Ogoni people, stressing that the President had always given assent to development projects coming to Ogoniland.
He further hinted that the Minister of Environment, Barrister Mohammed Abdulahi had initiated discussions with the Minister of Power on the power project while a team of engineers from the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN), the Port Harcourt Electricity Distribution Company and Ministry officials was dispatched to conduct reconnaissance survey of power facilities, electricity transmission and distribution routes in Ogoniland.
According to him, the processes are on for the conduct of the Environmental Impact Assessment of the project, which will lead to its eventual construction.
The project coordinator also indicated that he had opened discussions with the Council Chairmen of Khana, Gokana, Tai and Eleme Local Government Areas.
“We had very fruitful deliberations. Ogoni is not a virgin land; it already has built up areas that are most likely to stand in the way of the transmission lines”, he said, adding that “Time is of essence to deliver the power project and others on target and what that means is that we must not use our own hands to drag ourselves backwards through unnecessary communal disputes, chieftaincy tussles, petitions and squabbles over where to site projects”.
Giadom further disclosed that the engineering drawing for the power project is ready and by that design, power will be evacuated from the 132KV line sub-station in Ebubu, Eleme to Wiiyakaara in Khana and another 132KV line to Bodo in Gokana, stressing that from these two points, HYPREP shall further distribute 33KV to the communities of Ogoni.
He said powering households, the power project would energise the HYPREP water stations and the proposed economic development hubs that would house production and manufacturing activities across the four Ogoni local government areas, stressing that the construction of the power project has been divided into two phases.
Giadom described as overwhelming response for application for high pay skill areas of Aviation, Mechatronics, Seafaring and Entertainment by the project under its livelihood training programme, and hinted that HYPREP would soon conduct an online examination to screen the most qualified 100 candidates for each of the skill areas.
According to him, the selection shall be transparent, inclusive and on merit.
He disclosed that the Minister of Environment has increased to 10,000 the HYPREP’s first livelihood training for 5,000 Ogoni youths in general skills, and that the Ogoni Specialist Hospital approved by the Governing Council of HYPREP will be sited in Tai Local Government Area, which he said does not have a General Hospital.
Speakers at the event poured encomiums on the project coordinator for the power project initiative, and urged him to do more for the Ogoni people.
A women leader in the area, Chief Priscilia Vikue, while thanking Giadom for the project urged Ogoni communities to donate land for the project.

By: Donatus Ebi

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Rivers

Group Partners RIVSACA On Healthcare Improvement

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A Non-Governmental Organisation ( NGO) in Rivers State, Association of Civil Society on Malaria Control Immunization and Nutrition (ACOMIN) is seeking the support of Rivers State Agency for the Control of AIDS (RIVSACA) with a view to enhancing access to quality health care by the citizenry.
State Programme Officer of ACOMIN, Mrs MaryJane Akwaka, who said this in an interview with The Tide after an advocacy visit to the RIVSACA office in Port Harcourt, said the move was to strengthen the healthcare system, especially in the light of the effects of COVID-19.
“We are here at RIVSCA to seek support for our project, COVID-19 response mechanism and resilience for sustainable system.
“We are looking at strengthening the health care facilities in the state in order to provide adequate healthcare service to the community people.
Akwaka said the project is being carried out in five Local Government Areas, which are Port Harcourt, Obio/Akpor, Eleme and Khana and Tai.
According to her, the focus of ACOMIN at the moment is to identify available health facilities at the community and local government levels.
“Our community-led monitoring team had actually taken off”, she said, stressing that “some of the identifiable gaps observed including shortage of medical officers at the health care and lack of desks”.
“We are looking at insufficient staff at the primary health care centers such that there are not enough of them to attend to patients when they come”, she said.
Akwaka said ACOMIN is mobilizing all stakeholders to look into filling these gaps that were identified.
Also speaking, the Administrative Officer of the Rivers State Action Committee on AIDS, Mr Damiete Ben Sam Orugbani, said the groups are ready to work with any other group in the areas of reducing HIV/AIDS prevalence in the State.
He commended Mrs. Akwaka for her effort and stressed the need for more awareness on the need for people to access health facilities in their domain.

By: John Bibor & Adigun Oreoluwa

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Rivers

God Has Not Forsaken Nigeria -Bishop Ordu

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The Anglican Bishop of the Diocese of Evo, Rt. Rev. Innocent Uchechukwu Ordu, says that God has not forsaken Nigeria in spite of various challenges facing the country.
He stated this during the 2022 edition of the Diocese of Evo’s Praise and Prayer programme which was held at St. Jude’s Anglican Church, Oginigba Deanery to mark Nigeria’s 62nd Independence Anniversary.
“He has not forsaken us. He is set to redeem our nation. Nations and states are established by God for good ends, not for our destruction”, he said.
With reference to Psalm 33:12, Bishop Ordu made it clear that a nation is only blessed when the leaders and citizens choose to make the Lord their God and serve Him.
He urged all Christians, especially Diocese of Evo’s faithful to pray fervently for God’s intervention in the 2023 general elections to produce a set of leaders that would make Nigeria a greater country.
The preacher, Rev. Canon Hosanna Naenwi spoke on ‘Nigeria as a blessed nation,’ from Psalm 33:10-12.
He said just like Israel, Nigeria is blessed; but Nigerians must serve the Lord obediently, be involved in the running of the nation as Christians and take a stand against evil.
Several praise and worship sessions were led by various music maestros and the St Jude’s band while prayer sessions were led by various priests.
The event, which was moderated by Rev. Canon Ozioma Iheanetu ended with the singing of Nigeria’s National Anthem.

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Rivers

Foundation Trains 350 Rivers Youths On Specialised Skills

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The Tonto Dikeh Foundation (TDF) has commenced training for 350 unemployed youths in Rivers State on vocational and specialised skills, to enable them open businesses and employ others.
Ms Tonto Dikeh, Founder of TDF and 2023 Rivers Deputy Gubernatorial Candidate of the African Democratic Party (ADC), flagged off the three-week training programme in Port Harcourt.
She said it targeted to provide vocational skills and empowerment to the beneficiaries in catering, culinary, fashion and design, baking, make up, interior decoration, air conditioner and satellite (dish) installations, among others.
“We have also included coding as we want people to learn how to code (applications) and become players in the Information Technology marketplace.
“We want to empower as many youths as possible with skills to enable them to earn a living, support their families, and create employment for others,” she said.
She expressed optimism that the training with the theme, “Free Direct Aid Empowerment Programme for Rivers State,” would generate many indirect jobs in the state.
Dike said she decided to give back to the people at a time most Nigerians, particularly the youths, were experiencing hardship due to the downturn of the nation’s economy.
According to her, the economic downturn and high inflation have made many youths take to crime for their survival.
“So, when there is no employment, that is when you have increased armed robbery, violent crimes, insecurity, among other crimes and criminalities.
“At presently, every youth is now looking for a legal avenue to become more productive. Nobody wants to be a liability anymore.
“This programme seeks to give youths some sense of belonging through their acquisition of skills, to enable them to fend for themselves and become employers of labour,” she added.
The Nollywood actress said at the end of the training the best five trainees from each vocation would be supported by the foundation to start their own businesses.
She said the foundation was also planning to organise another vocational training on technology related skills, featuring instructors from South Africa and the United States.
Speaking, the Paramount Ruler of Rumuagholu Community in Obio/Akpor Local Government Area, Eze Samuel Nyegwa, commended her for empowering youths from the area.
He said that people were proud of Dikeh for her several contributions to the state, describing her as an illustrious daughter of Rivers.
One of the beneficiaries, Joyce Amadi, said she was delighted to have the opportunity to acquire a skill in fashion and design for free.
Amadi said she had always wanted to learn the skill but had been unable to do so, due to the exorbitant fees charged by fashion houses in Port Harcourt.
“So, I thank Tonto Dike for giving me this opportunity to realise my dream of becoming a fashion designer and make a living from it,” she said.

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