DESOPADEC may drop projects to offset N10b debt
THE new management at the Delta State Oil Producing Areas Development Commission (DESOPADEC) may not award projects in 2016 to enable it clear the N10 billion debt owed contractors, the agency’s Executive Director, Projects, Philip Gbasin, has hinted.
Speaking with reporters in Sapele at the weekend, Gbasin, however, regretted that the commission’s determination to meeting the huge expectations of the people was being hampered by dwindling resources owing to the free fall of oil price at the international market.
He said: “The files we inherited are quite frightening, about N10 billion. One of the biggest challenges is that for one certificate, it can take up to four installments to pay because there are so many projects awarded. Some contractors have completed projects and have not been paid.”
Gbasin stressed that “for this reason, no project would be awarded in 2016 to enable DESOPADEC clear debts being owed contractors.”
He also disclosed that the commission was considering smaller strategic projects to meet the needs of the people, adding that the agency was equally exploring ways to invest in human capital development due to the inherent multiplier effects.
The executive director submitted that to avoid duplication of projects in communities by various development agencies like the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) and the MDGs, there was the need for synergy, adding that the new management intends to broaden partnership with communities to pinpoint projects that are sustainable and of immense importance.
Gbasin noted that since the demands and expectations of the people were usually highly, the commission places priorities on “realistic expectations.”
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