Beneficiaries of the intervention schemes of the Dangote Cement Plc, Obajana Plant have described the support by the company as massive and impactful.
The schemes, according to the leaders of the communities, and informed sources run into several billions of naira.
A recent report from an independent vox populi to gauge the level of intervention had confirmed that the company enjoys robust relations with host communities, and had just signed a workable Community Development Agreement (CDA).
Respondents from the survey spoke glowingly of the multimillion health facility at Iwaa Community built by the DCP Obajana.
The company said: “The contribution of the company to the development of the state are too numerous to list. Is it the job opportunities created? Is it the support in health sector, road infrastructure, education, financial empowerment, and rural electrification?”
The Dangote Cement Plc had just recently completed a well furnished multi-million naira hospital at Iwaa, and as well completed the multi-billion naira Nigeria’s longest concrete road between Obajana and Kabba, a statement from the company said.
“These twin interventions have really supported both the state and the Federal Government in the areas of health and road infrastructure,” the statement added.
The company said most of the CSR schemes are contained in the mutually agreed Community Development Agreement (CDA).
A company source said that the Group is also building a multi-million naira skill acquisition centre in Lokoja.
When completed, he said, it would provide the requisite skills and thus empower the youth to be productive and contribute to the economic development of the state.
Members of the communities who spoke during the survey said the Obajana-Kabba concrete road has greatly eased mobility, while describing it as the most important road in the state.
It would be recalled that during the 2012 flood, the company had contributed N430million, it said.
During the signing ceremony of the latest CDA, the mining communities spoke glowingly of the company, while expressing their appreciation and the smooth relation.
Chairman of the Okun Area Traditional Council and the Obaro of Kabba HRM Solomon Dele Owoniyi during a recent visit said the 43km concrete road has elevated the status of his people in Nigeria.
The paramount ruler said: “Without this road, Okun people would have been completely shot out of the state capital, Lokoja. We are most grateful,” he said.
One of the very influential members of the community Taiwo Babalola who asked for anonymity because of the government ongoing persecution of the company said: “Dangote is our son. We would protect his huge investment and gigantic concrete road. I am happy that this is happening in my lifetime and in my Kingdom. This is a great opportunity for us and many generations to come. Our society will be opened as you can see vehicles and commercial activities have started coming up. May God Almighty bless Dangote and all his staff.”
As part of its Corporate Social Responsibility drive in Kogi State, the Dangote Cement Plc has doled out several millions of naira to cooperative groups in the four communities.
The traditional leader spoke glowingly of Alhaji Aliko Dangote, describing him as God’s sent, adding that his contribution to the people of Kogi State cannot be quantified.
The statement said that the company supported the state in building magistrate court and judges residences in the state.
Other areas of interventions in the communities are: the construction of numerous boreholes, granting of yearly scholarship, electric power supply communities, employment opportunities, building of schools, library construction, supply of modern furniture to schools and rehabilitations of internal roads.
The company had donated tricycles to its host communities to enhance their capacity to connect each other with less stress. The beneficiary communities are: Obajana, Apata, Iwaa and Oyo.
The recent invasion of the company, according to Fatai Idowu, a shop owner at the Obajana market, has paralysed commercial activities and transportation on the area.
“It is therefore unfortunate that protesters will be hired on this issue” the company said.