Kogi State Government pays compensation to over 700 people affected by Ankpa Gully Erosion Project — Kogi State Government
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Kogi State Government pays compensation to over 700 people affected by Ankpa Gully Erosion Project — Kogi State Government

By Mariam Adams

The Kogi State Government has taken a proactive response to the ecological crisis facing the state by paying compensation to over 700 people affected by the erosion of the Ankpa Gorge.

At the ceremony held at Olubo-Ojo community in Ankpa Local Government Area, the state governor, Alhaji Ahmed Usman Ododo, emphasised the government’s commitment to the protection of the environment and the well-being of people affected by the project.

He explained that the compensation initiative aims to mitigate the challenges of relocation and ensure environmental sustainability.

The Kogi State Government, through the ACReSAL Project, a World Bank initiative, has identified 256 ecological areas as high priority for intervention.

The focus on communities like Omigbo in Kabba-Bunu, Olubo-Ojo in Ankpa and Etahi in Okene shows that the government is committed to addressing environmental issues.

Governor Ododo, represented by the State Commissioner for Environment and Ecological Management, Engr. Joseph Oluwasegun, reiterated the administration’s commitment to environmental sustainability.

He called on the residents of Olubo-Ojo commune to cooperate with the contractor, assuring them of the government’s determination to find lasting solutions to the problem of erosion and flooding in the area.

The Governor commended the ACReSAL State Project Coordinator, Barrister Ladi Jatto OON, and her team for their relentless efforts in addressing environmental issues in Kogi State.

He added that their involvement paves the way for a sustainable future for the region.

Earlier, Barrister Jatto, represented by the project accountant, Pastor Michael Biodun Ojo, commended Governor Ododo for his care for the environment.

He noted that the compensation would mean an end to the devastating impact of gully erosion on the community.

The project coordinator stressed the importance of paying compensation to those affected by the project before its implementation.

He said the team would now proceed to Etahi in Okene Local Government Area to collect documentation, conduct verification and pay compensation to the injured.

During the compensation programme, the Permanent Secretary, Alhaji Jibrin Saidu expressed gratitude to the state government and ACReSAL for working together to promote environmental sustainability.

He encouraged beneficiaries to use the compensation fund wisely.

In separate messages of gratitude, Mr. Samuel Yahaya, Mrs. Jane Musa and Dr. DY Dangana expressed gratitude to the Kogi State Government and Governor ACReSAL for addressing the long-standing environmental challenges faced by the community.

They committed to working with the contractor and design team to ensure the successful completion of the project.