Delta Governor Ifeanyi Okowa has urged the Federal Government to restart work on the Gas Revolution Industrial Park project in Ogidigben, the state’s Warri South-West Local Government Area.
On Friday, Okowa made the announcement after inspecting ongoing construction work at the multibillion-naira Floating Market in Ogheye, Warri North Local Government Area.
At the inspection, Okowa was flanked by his deputy, Mr Kingsley Otuaro.
He said that the project for the Gas Revolution Industrial Park had been postponed for far too long and urged the federal government to investigate the reasons for the delay as soon as possible.
The scheme, according to the governor, has a huge economic value for the country and the Niger Delta. He urged the federal government to work with the state government to improve the quality of life for coastal residents.
“I use this opportunity to call on the Federal Government to pay more attention to these riverine areas.
Okowa said: “When we bring joy to them, it is good for us as a state and as a nation.
“Government should do everything to encourage the coastal people, provide a more conducive environment for the production of the oil that is the main stay of the economy of this nation.
“I also use this opportunity to call on the Federal Government to ensure that the Gas Revolution Industrial Park project is brought alive.
“For too long we have spoken about it; several meetings were held and plans were put in place.
“Whatever is holding it back, it is important that the Federal Government takes a very serious look at it and come forth with a workable plan that will enable it take off.
“We will continue to call on the Federal Government to rise up to the occasion to partner the state to ensure that we develop our riverine areas.”
On the floating market, Okowa said the project had been approved by the previous government, but that the process had been slow and that the contractor had not been able to accomplish much.
“When we came on board, we assured the people that we will complete the entire market and also promised a redesign of the project.
“The market has a banking hall, an administrative building, a standing tower and other facilities.
“It sits on a 6,000 square metres platform built on top of the river and you know what that means.
“A lot has gone in and the contractor has gone ahead to build 96 open stores and 80 lock-up stores both almost completed.
“It is a special market because we have a lot of communities from the Warri North, Warri South-West, and the river extending to Edo and Ondo state,” he said.
“For every project we are able to deliver in the riverine area, we are happier for it much more as a government than those projects we do in the upland because it is much easier to do project in the upland.
“However, we must realise that our brothers and sisters who are in the riverine areas suffer more of the effect of oil pollution and ought to be attended to,” he said. Okowa thanked the people for giving peace a chance, assuring that government would continue to partner them to do more.