Vast Gas Deposits Can Make Delta Nigeria’s Investment Hub, Says Okowa

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Omon-Julius Onabu in Asaba

Delta State Governor, Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa, has expressed confidence in the capacity of the state to become a real power and investment hub in the country because of its huge gas deposit, which is invaluable to the energy sector and other industries.

Okowa made the assertion yesterday while performing the groundbreaking ceremony for a 400MW combined cycle power plant at Ekrokpe/Ekrejegbe, Ughelli South Local Government Area.

He expressed delight over the groundbreaking event, saying with the increase in the number of energy generating companies it was important for the distribution companies to see that Nigerians are satisfied with their services.

The governor acknowledged the existence of a litany of challenges in the country’s power generation but noted that the government was not resting on its oars in tackling the problem.

Okowa said: “We are glad as a state that we will be a hub for power generation because of the peaceful nature of our state and huge deposit of gas.

“The Nigerian government has continued in her struggle to provide energy for development and for home services in our country. We know we are faced with challenges but with the private sector becoming more interested in generating energy, there is great hope that the energy need of this country would be catered for in the nearest future.”

The governor, however, urged host communities to sustain the peaceful disposition that has made the entire state relatively peaceful, even as he cautioned against unreasonable demands on the companies in their respective localities.

Nonetheless, he charged the management of the company, Onose TBEA Energy Limited to be committed to its social corporate responsibilities and ensure that youths from its area of operation are engaged in the construction work of the plant and are also, employed when the company commences its operations.

Chairman of Onose Tbea, General Alexander Ogomudia (rtd), had in an address said, “Without power we will be wasting our time in terms of development.”

He stated that though the company was commencing operations by generating 400 MW of electricity, the target was to contribute 2000 MW of electricity to the national grid.

The Managing Director of the company, Mr. Jim Elueni, in a welcome address, noted, “The Governor of Delta State, Dr Okowa, in appreciating the importance of this project to his state, has wasted no time in granting us all approvals that arrived at his desk in the pursuit of this laudable project.”