The Minister of State for Power, Hajiya Zainab Kuchi, has said that the Federal Government is committed to implementing contents of the Hydro Power Producing Areas Development Commission (HYPPADEC) Act of 2010 as part of essential measures to stem the impacts of hydro power projects on host communities across the country.
Kuchi, who recently commissioned an e-Library and abattoir donated to the Borgu Emirate Community in Niger State by the management of Kainji Hydro-Electric Plc, one Nigeria's three hydro electric generating companies situated in the state, explained that the government was already working out modalities for a smooth take-off of HYPPADEC.
She stated that the two projects which she had inaugurated were part of the corporate social responsibility of Kainji power plant to the host community, adding that the successful launch portrayed the present administration's invaluable support to the power sector.
According to her, the government had commenced the process of implementing the provisions of the HYPPADEC Act of 2010 with its expected initiation of a seamless operational framework that will guarantee the relevance of HYPPADEC in the emerging power sector, which will see new owners assume operation at the various successor companies of the Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN).
While reiterating the commitment of the government to also ensure adequate and reliable power supply for the socio-economic development across Nigeria, Kuchi implored the host community to maintain and make good use of the commissioned facilities commissioned, adding that such would encourage further development of social amenities by power firms for its host communities.
Kuchi had late last year hinted that the Federal Government had set aside the sum of N220 million in the 2012 budget to enable HYPPADEC commence initial operations.
She told secretaries to the state governments (SSGs) involved with HYPPADEC that budgets for the Commission's operations were provided for in the 2010 and 2011 financial years but eventually lost to non-existence of a framework for the Commission.
She said: "The ministry is in the position to attend to your requests but we must take them in and provide answers to the ones we can. There is an ongoing amendment to the Act establishing HYPPADEC and I think it is to establish the percentage derivable to the states in terms of revenue.
"We have already started the process of activating the operations of HYPPADEC because there is already an amount budgeted for that in the budget; the commission was already a done deal as far as the ministry is concerned; N220 million is budgeted for its operation in 2012."
The states that make up HYPPADEC are Kebbi, Benue, Kwara, Plateau, Niger and Kogi.