By Etuka Sunday
The Dangote Cement Plant in Gboko weekend disbursed scholarship funds to host communities in Benue State.
The scholarship is part of the company’s annual Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) scheme for host communities, and it has been running for upward a decade.
Last year, the Dangote’s cement Plant in Gboko paid a staggering N700milliom in tax to the Government of the State.
The excited State Governor Samuel Ortom had said without the Dangote Cement Plant in Gboko, there would have been a vacuum in the State’s economy.
The Dangote Group is adjudged to be Africa’s largest donor, and second biggest employer of labour after government in Nigeria.
Only recently, the Aliko Dangote Foundation donated 150 fully kitted operational vehicles to Nigeria Police, and as well launched a N2billion ‘Dangote Village’ built in Maiduguri for the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs).
The Gboko Cement Plant’s Director Rama Srinivasan who represented Dangote Group’s President Aliko Dangote presented a symbolic cheque to the representatives of the communities.
He said the scholarship scheme was part of the Dangote Cement’s contribution to host communities, adding that the programme will be sustained.
President of the Yion Development Association (YIDA) Mr. Ande Per who received the cheque on behalf of the communities commended the management of the company for the gesture.
Mr. Per however appealed for a review of the scholarship fund so that more students can benefit.
He said the Dangote Cement plant is a blessing to the Gboko Communities, as it has created direct and indirect jobs for the people, and thereby addressing insecurity in the State.
Speaking separately, President of Yion Students, Comrade Msor Tsea; President of Youths of the host community Comrade Kuleve Kokoiwen and representatives of the community’s Royal fathers His Royal Highness Nyamnongu Abeva hailed the Dangote Cement Plc for supporting education in the state.
In their separate responses, General Manager Human Resources Management and Administration George Ofurum and the Assistant General Manager Corporate Affairs and Special Duties Jonathan Kunde enjoined the community to make judicious use of the money and advised the students to study hard to justify the purpose for the scholarship.
The event took place at Winika Hotels in Gboko.
CSR projects by Dangote Cement in Benue State include: Electrification of villages at Masaje, Ipav, Gaando, Mbayion, Quarry Community, Igyula- Mbayion, Amua- Mbayion, Tsekutsa-Mbayion, some communities at Ukpekpe- Mbayion; procurement of 50 motor cycles on a revolving scheme basis and construction of 14 blocks of classrooms in different host communities.
Others are: Construction of a bridge at Mkar, donation of N 15million Naira to Yion Clan Foundation, construction of 21 boreholes in some communities of Mbayion, yandev and Ipav(arrangements are already in place to reactivate non functional ones) and procurement of four trucks of fertilizers on a revolving scheme to Mbayion Community.
Other projects also include: construction of a block of classrooms for the quarry Community and the construction of examination hall at Mbatyula Progressive College, Tsekucha.