10 November 2011, Sweetcrude, Calabar – An Indian firm, Engineering Procurement Construction-Brath Heavy Electrical (BHEL), has been awarded a $30 million contract by the Cross River State government for construction work on its 52 megawatts gas-driven Independent Power Plant (IPP) in Adiabo, which is near the state capital, Calabar.
At the contract signing ceremony in Calabar, Special Adviser to Governor Liyel Imoke on Investment Promotion, Mr. Gerald Adah, and the Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice of the state, Mr. Attah Ochinke, represented the state government while Mr. Ricardo Leandro Garcia signed for International Technical Assistance Consultants (ITAC) – the project managers for BHEL.
The development brought to fruition two years of negotiations by both parties on the project being financed with a credit loan arranged through a bilateral agreement between the Nigeria’s Federal Government and the government of India.
The project would be executed in 36 months, according to Adah, who said BHEL got the job because it manufactures General Electric products and has many years of experience in independent power plants construction.
“The essence of this project is to complement power supply from the national grid given the increasing demand for electricity in the country. Secondly, it is critical to the industrial development of the state. Government conceived this project in the last two years to boost power supply in Calabar metropolis.
“We hope to complete this project and make it operational before the expiration of the second term administration of his Excellency. We do not want the succeeding administration to inherit it, hence everything would be done to complete it on schedule”.
According to him, about 500 people are expected to benefit from direct employment in the plant while thousands would be engaged by the industries that the plant would attract.
Apart from ITAC of Spain, who are project managers, supervisors to BHEL on the project include Cross Sector Resources Ltd of Nigeria and Soccoin of Spain.
Construction work is expected to commence in earnest following the signing of the contract agreement, but there may be a delay as the state government is yet to select a definite site for project.