From Gyang Bere, Jos
Commissioner representing Plateau State at the Hydroelectric Power Producing Areas Development Commission (HYPADEC), Dr. Saleh Mohammed Galadima Kanam said Federal Government will come up with intervention programmes that will alleviate the suffering of communities battling with ecological challenges due to heavy dams used in generating electricity in Barkin-Ladi Local Government Area of Plateau State.
Dr. Kanam disclosed this at the weekend during a town hall meeting with communities hosting Nigeria Electricity Supply Corporation (NESCO), in Barkin-Ladi Local Government Area of the state.
He noted that the Commission interface with members of the host communities to ascertain whether they are benefitting from the Electricity company and to come up with programmes that will improve living condition of the people.
“We are here to interface very closely with communities that are presume to be the immediate people that resides at the dam sites own and manage by NESCO to find out from them the nature of the ecological problem they are facing by the presence of those dams.
“We want to also find out if they are benefitting, we want to know so that those benefits can be maximize for the overall interest of the welfare and development of the communities.”
Dr. Kanam assured that the Commission will visit the villages and interface with the villagers with a view to improved their welfare and living condition due to ecological challenges.
“With time, we will move down to those communities and meet with the villages to enable us get first hand information that will help us in planning the kind of developmental programmes and welfare that will be useful to the communities
Plateau State Governor, Simon Lalong who was represented by Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Environment, Plateau State, Anesthesia Donjur said the function of HYPADEC is critical in the state in view of the environmental degradation as a result of dams used for generating electricity.
She noted that some activities that caused environmental degradation such as climate change, soil degradation among others should be addressed urgently for a better living condition.
“The work of HYPADEC is critical because looking at environmental degradation which is being face by communities in the state. We feel that some of the issues that are causing climate change, soil segregation and other ecological problem will be handle properly.”
Former Secretary to the Government of Plateau State, Hon. Rufus Bature applauded Government for establishing HYPADEC and said the Commission will addressing issues affecting the poor communities.
Community Leader of Kura Falls in Gashish District of Barkin-Ladi Local Government Area, Mr. Danladi Chong appealed to HYPADEC to forestall security in the community.
He noted that Kura Falls is the immediate community hosting NESCO but several lives have perished due to Insecurity in the area.
Chong said Federal Government had promised to established a mobile unit in the area to give protection to the people, but for three years now, it has not take place.