The Minister of Power Prof. Chinedu Nebo at the weekend inspected ongoing construction of the N15 billion permanent site for the National Power Training Institute of Nigeria (NAPTIN) in Abuja.
Dumped sand and loose soil was identified as part of the challenges preventing the smooth construction of the site.
Speaking during the inspection tour, the Director General of NAPTIN, Engr. Reuben Okeke disclosed that the challenge was hampering the progress of construction works at the site.
He said, ”When we started the main building, we realized that before we could get to the real soil we had to go down about 4.5metres and now that we are embarking on infrastructure like roads and drainages, we discovered that 70percent of the land has this dumped useless soil.”
According to him, the original cost for the project was about N15billion and around N2.4bn has been invested already in the construction process therefore it would be odd to think of relocating to another place.
He said, “The fact still remains that to remove this dump won’t cost as much because anywhere they would want to give us, we would start the investment from the scratch. So it is a better option to find a way of removing this.”
He said they would write to the people that left the sand to excavate it to the approved place of about one kilometer from the neighbouring water treatment plant where the dump was packed from about seven years ago.
Meanwhile the Minister of Power, Prof Nebo while addressing newsmen during the inspection said power is a veritable key to industrial revolution in Nigeria especially as the country has emerged the number one economy in Africa, “and growing at a beautiful rate of 6.5 percent annually.”
“Experts have said if power is corrected and we have enough quantity and quality power in Nigeria, growth rate might even get to double digit; so that is a challenge for us,” Nebo said.
the Minister stated that it is worthwhile that government is building capacity so that there will be more indigenous expertise and to ensure the empowerment of young people especially with the Local Content Act coming up to avoid expatriates from dominating the private-led power sector.
Nebo commended the efforts put in by NAPTIN to develop infrastructure, concept and capacity, assuring that “Federal Government will continue to empower NAPTIN so that its dreams are realized.”