The World Bank has urged its Project Management Unit with the Transmission Company (TCN), to always find out what effect its projects have on communities where its power projects are being implemented.
The Coordinator of Environmental, Resettlement and Social Unit (ERSU), of the World Bank Aromeh Adole, urged stakeholders, including members of the civil society organisations and the media to volunteer their candid opinion about the TCN, to the World Bank Group.
Adole, who spoke to the press, in Abuja, said in carrying out these projects, the bank is aware that the projects will have impacts on the communities where these projects are executed.?
He recalled that they had problems in the past with their projects because they did not consult enough with the community.
He said the World Bank has told the NEGIP to consult with the communities, and also engage the media, insisting that the people need to know ?what you are doing and they need to be carried along. That is why we are holding this consultation to hear from the communities how our projects are impacting in them.?
Adole said NEGIP was having issues with communities in 9th Mile in Enugu State as a result of discussion with the wrong people before the genuine owners of the location later emerged to evict the contractors from the site.
He said that the consultation forum was therefore predicated on the experience and to explain to the stakeholders what they are doing.
He said the World Bank has always insisted on the projects having their Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) before the commencement of the execution.
Adole said NEGIP is working closely with the Federal Ministry of Environment and the EIA is the standard requirement by the World Bank.
He said: ?If the Federal Ministry of Environment does not clear the environmental aspect of your project, the bank will not spend one Naira on it,? pointing out that there was a particular project that was concluded without the environmental aspect which the World Bank rejected upon submission on the basis of EIA.
?We have four project implementation units now that are implementing projects that are funded by four donor agencies: The Nigerian Electricity and Gas Implementation Project (NEGIP) that has gathered us here today is being funded by the World Bank,? he said, adding, ?we have other PIUs, there is one that is being funded by the French Development Agency and another that is being funded by the Islamic Bank and yet another that is being funded by African Development Bank.
?These are project implementation units that are implementing projects that are being funded by all these donor agencies and the aim is to ensure that we don?t have issues of delay in disbursement, in making payments after signing contracts.?
Adole said the bank is working with donor agencies and all the funds are available from day one. You don?t need to start waiting for appropriation and the budgeting process which takes a long time.