BENIN CITY – The people of Ofunama and Nikorogha communities in Ovia South West Local Government of Edo State have commended Okomu Oil Palm Company for the development strides in their areas.
The communities gave the commendation yesterday when the Managing Director of the Company, Dr. Graham Hefer visited the two communities to commission projects it had earlier earmarked to be built for them in the company’s 2017 budget as part of its “Corporate Social Responsibility” (CSP) programme.
On arrival at the community Town hall, which was also built by the company, Dr. Hefer who was received by the Chairman Ofunama community, Comrade Biebitel commander and other leaders was greeted with the title Tamanipreye, awarded to him by the Ijaw National Congress, (INC).
“You are indeed our brother, you have made us proud, you have done good for us”, proclaimed a prominent member of the Ofunama Community, Chief Hon. D.R. Agagha (JP), one time Board member of the Bendel Newspapers Company Limited (BNCL), publishers of The OBSERVER titles.
The people however, appealed to the Managing Director to reconsider his stance not to repair the road leading to the community, acknowledging that though the company had always reconstructed the road anytime it fails, the activities of illegal timber lorries have continued to cause damage to the road.
He however urged them to seek the collaboration of the Timber Lorry Owners and the Company in a stakeholders meeting for the way forward to ensure that the road remained in an all round good state for economic activities.
The Managing Director also commissioned the perimeter fencing of the Egbema Secondary School, Ofunama and called for its proper maintenance by the people and the school authority.
Dr. Hefer had lamented that the projects built by the company in the community were not properly being looked after, particularly as it had injected enormous resources in their execution.
Besides, he had also inspected a guest house being built for the Ofunama community and insisting that the proper DPC level be maintained and assured that the guest house would be ready for use in 2018.
He announced that its skill acquisition programme had been extended from one month to 12 months for welding, GSM repairs, carpentry, among others adding that the women and youth should be asked to select projects that will be suitable for them for execution.
At Nikorogha, the Managing Director commissioned a block of three classroom and a Staff Quarters for teachers, made up of three self-contained apartments.
The people sang praises as the Secretary of the community Christopher Imafidon reeled out about 14 projects already built and commissioned by the company.
They include 200 pieces of benches and desks for Olodiama Primary School, provision of an ultra modern town hall, provision of two-boreholes with power generating plants for better Olodiama Primary Schools and Inikorogha Grammar School, construction of two sanitary pavilions, provision of huge number of assorted textbooks for Inikorogha Grammar School and the sinking of a borehole for A.T. and P quarters Inikorogha.
Others are the construction of the first three classroom building for Inikorogha Grammar School, the construction of a teachers’ Residential Quarter, the latest construction of another three classroom building, the grading of Udo-Inikorogha Road, bursary awards, skills acquisition programme (four slots yearly and the contribution in kind for the burial of the community’s senior man, Amaokosuwei among others.
At the Ofunama visit, the Ajakoroma and Jamaghe communities were represented.