Delta State Government, at its first Executive Council (EXCO) meeting of the year at the Government House Asaba on Friday, approved several major infrastructural projects, including clearance for the establishment of the Kwale Industrial Park, even as the government commenced the implementation of the 2021 Budget.
The State Commissioner for Information, Mr. Charles Aniagwu, disclosed this while briefing newsman on resolutions at the meeting, which was presided by Governor Ifeanyi Okowa.
Aniagwu said that approval was given for the establishment of the multi-billion naira Kwale Industrial Park with 25 percent equity for the state government and the remaining 75 percent equity would be in the hands of private operators.
He noted that the approval was a boost to the Industrial Park, the process of which establishment was slowed down by the outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic in 2020.
Aniagwu said, “Today, being the first EXCO of the year, we considered quite a number of projects and we are hopeful that in the course of the year, we will begin to give trends to most of those projects that are outlined in the 2021 budget. So, our 2021 budget is fully operational.
“We started by approving the establishment of the Kwale Industrial Park. That establishment now means that we now have a Multi-Purpose Vehicle through which we are going to implement the full establishment and operationalisation of that industrial park.
“This Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) that is being established in the name of Kwale Industrial Park is going to be the government eye. The government is going to hold not more than 25 per cent of the equity of that industrial park.
“And out of that 25 per cent, government will consider what is necessary to take care of host communities. We are not holding it in trust for host communities because we are paying compensation for the land that we are acquiring.”
EXCO also approved the widening and rehabilitation of the 2.1 kilometres Orhunwhorun Road in Udu Local Government Area in the WRri axis of the state at a total cost of N398.2 million.
The Information commissioner said that the rehabilitation work would start from Orhunwhorun to DSC in Ovwian-Alaja.
He said that approval was also given by the state EXCO for the construction of Aragba-Orogun township Roads in Ughelli North Local Government Area of the state at a total cost of N552 million, stressing that compensation would be paid in the construction of the road.
Similarly, approval was given for the overlay of the Old Lagos/Asaba Road through Umunede/Ekwuoma/Igbodo in Ika North-East Local Government Area of the state at a total cost of N310 million.
Mr. Aniagwu disclosed that approval was given for the second Agricultural Policy of the state government to boost the agricultural sector in the state.
Mr. Aniagwu pointed out that the state Exco considered the report of the Judicial Panel of Enquiry into the Okpe-Urhobo Forest Reserve crisis, adding that the white paper from the panel was accepted by Exco to address the crisis.
He pointed out that the Head of Service is to set up a panel to investigate a retired Director in the Ministry of Environment over his alleged encroachment on parts of the forest reserve.
Meanwhile, the state EXCO further approved the scrapping of the taskforce involved in the harassment of land developers under the guise of Public Property Protection, noting that the act outlawing extortion and harassment of property developers, that is, the Delta State Public and Private Property Protection Law of 2018, was still in force.
Moreover, Aniagwu disclosed that the EXCO also gave approval for Warri Wolves football club to participate in the 2020/2021 Nigeria Professional League.