By Davies Iheamnachor
Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board, NCDMB, has said President Muhammadu Buhari was committed to completing all Federal Government abandoned projects.
The Executive Secretary, NCDMB, Engr. Simbi Wabote, spoke in Port Harcourt yesterday at the kick-off event for the Anoh Gas Processing Company, AGPC, Capacity Development Initiative, CDI, Project at the Centre for Skills Development and Training in Rivers State.
Wabote said the development of the skills acquisition center was conceived by the Petroleum Technology Development Fund, PTDF, to train and increase the competence and capability of Nigerians to meet the low-to-middle level human resources needs of the Nigerian oil and gas industry.
He noted that the project started in 2011, but come to limelight in 2019 due to funding issues, adding that the pandemic also affected completion of the training centre.
Wabote said: “The contract for the construction of the Tower Block, the Library, and the Heavy & Light Industrial Workshops was awarded in February 2011. Due to funding and other sundry issues, site construction works stalled since 2014 and is quite regrettable that the Center is yet to be completed more than one decade after commencement of works.
“In late 2019, we commenced discussions with PTDF, our sister agency within the Federal Ministry of Petroleum Resources, on areas of collaboration to complete and operationalize the Center uniquely positioned in the Greater Port Harcourt area of Rivers State.
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“The roadmap towards the completion was completed in 2020 but implementation was hampered by the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. I am delighted that we have finally gotten to this point in which the major contractor is being remobilized back to the site after about six years of inactivity.”
He noted that efforts of the incumbent FG on the project was a proof of its stand on human capital development, noting that NCDMB was deploying one of their unique intervention tools known as Capacity Development Initiative projects to midwife the completion of the remaining piece of this Skills Center.
He said: “Anoh Gas Processing Company (AGPC) Ltd is our CDI partner of choice on this push to finish the Skill Center in readiness for students’ intake and utilization. We commend the diligence and pragmatism of the management of AGPC in the completion of the novation of the contract agreements and the re-mobilization of the contractor to site.
“Getting this project to completion and its utilization will be a thing of pride to the Ministry of Petroleum Resources and His Excellency, President Muhammadu Buhari who is very keen to finish off abandoned government projects.
“NCDMB believes that a functional skills development and training centre such as this one represents a further step towards the achievement of one of the Board’s key mandate which is to develop local capacities and capabilities.”