President Muhammadu Buhari yesterday inaugurated $2.8 billion Abuja-Kaduna-Kano (AKK) Gas Pipeline Project, with disclosures that the contract would create jobs, enhance technology transfer and boost local manufacturing.
Sharing the president’s optimism, the Group Managing Director of Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Mallam Mele Kyari, said the project has the capacity to generate 3,600 megawatts of electricity.
The president pledged the federal government’s commitment to timely delivery of the project within budgetary allocation and specifications.
The president, who made this commitment at the virtual inauguration ceremony of the project at Ajaokuta, Kogi State and Rigachikun, Kaduna State camp sites simultaneously, said the project was strategic for Nigerians and hence, must succeed.
Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Mr. Femi Adesina, in a statement, said the president charged NNPC and its partners to remain focused, describing the AKK project as part and parcel of the delivery of the present administration’s next level agenda for sustainable development, enhancement of economic prosperity and an increase in the country’s infrastructure assets.
Adesina said Governors Yahaya Bello of Kogi State and Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna physically inaugurated the projects at both Ajaokuta and Rigachikun sites, while the president watched remotely via video-conference from the Council Chamber of the State House in Abuja.
‘‘We promised the nation that we will expand the critical gas infrastructure in the country to promote the use of gas in the domestic market. These include the Escravos to Lagos Pipeline System – 2 (ELPS-2), Obiafu to Obrikom (OB3) pipeline and AKK.
‘‘These projects are fundamental to our desire to industrialise and energise the entrepreneurial spirit that is ever present in our population,” Buhari said.
Adesina said the president highlighted the benefits of the project with a completion period of two years, saying it would provide gas for power generation and gas-based industries that would facilitate the development of new industries.
He also said the project would ensure the revival of moribund industries along transit towns in Kogi State, the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Niger, Kaduna and Kano states, with the unquantifiable output when the project finally takes off.
‘‘It has significant job creation potential both direct and indirect, while fostering the development and utilisation of local skills and manpower, technology transfer and promotion of local manufacturing,’’ the president said.