- The Honorable Commissioner for Energy & Mineral Resources, Lagos State Government – Engr. Taofiq Ajibade Tijani
- The Paramount ruler of Ikorodu Division, Oba Salaudeen Oyefusi
- Oguntade II, The Ayangburen of Ikorodu
- The Reagent of Ikorodu traditional Council
- The Executive Chairman, Ikorodu Local Government
- The Chairman of Lagos State Community Development Advisory Council
- Community Leaders here present
- The Chairman, Falcon Petroleum Limited
- Distinguished members of the Press
- Ladies and Gentlemen
It gives me great pleasure to welcome each and every one of you to this auspicious event as we mark the commencement of an initiative that we believe will make significant impact in the landscape of our host communities in Ikorodu.
As you know, Falcon is the licensed Local Distribution Company responsible for the development, distribution and management of Natural gas in the Ikorodu distribution zone of Lagos State. This is a 20year operational license that was granted to our Company in 2005. Despite the many visible and significant challenges we faced at inception, Falcon was able to deliver First Gas successfully to industries in November 2006. We have continued over the years to increase our investment in gas distribution infrastructure within Ikorodu, and currently supply gas to 16companies in the area.
Falcon Petroleum Limited remains committed to developmental projects that will impact a lot of lives in our host communitiesProfessor Joseph Ezigbo (MD)
As a company, we have understood from inception that our success in Ikorodu is assured in a commitment to being an integral partner in the industrial development of Ikorodu, and in the evident development and improvement of the standards of living of the citizen of Ikorodu in particular, and of Lagos State in general. Over the years therefore, we have partnered with our host communities to deliver value on various projects including the delivery of a multipurpose hall, rehabilitation of a 1.2km stretch of road, employment of indigenes within our company and projects, etc. in all these efforts, I use this opportunity to commend the cooperation and goodwill of our hosts communities at every stage of our work.
Our gathering here today is occasioned by another step being undertaken by Falcon as a socially responsible member of the Ikorodu community. After several engagements and town-hall meetings with the communities, we reached agreement regarding the need to empower members of the community to be able to live more productive and economically independent lives, thereby directly impacting their communities. This project is very much in line with our corporate commitment to impact lives in our areas of operations.
With the clear understanding that when you train a woman, you train a nation, we have partnered with our hosts communities to design a vocational skills acquisition program to benefit selected women from the communities. Well over a hundred women were brought forward from the communities, and after a rigorous selection process, 48 have been selected to be a part of this pilot. These 48 women will undergo a rigorous 3-month training in a variety of vocations, at the end of which we will facilitate their placement in reputable institutions for a one-month industrial attachment program. At the end of this consolidated 4-month program, successful participants will graduate and be presented with starter packs from Falcon Petroleum Limited to enable them set up their own businesses. We will, in concert with our training facilitators, provide a one-year mentoring and monitoring support to ensure our finalists stay focused and successful.
Falcon Petroleum Limited remains committed to developmental projects that will impact a lot of lives in our host communities and it is our intention to continue to invest in the people and locality of Ikorodu, within the limitations of our resources and statutory approvals required to be obtained from our principals, the Nigerian Gas Company, before we are able to undertake certain projects.
It is imperative that we point out that the success of this initiative hinges to a large degree on the commitment of the participants themselves. I therefore implore the host communities to take an active role in ensuring their selected participants remain consistent throughout the course of the program. We would be remiss if we failed to acknowledge the support and collaboration we have received from the traditional rulers at various levels within Ikorodu, as well as from Lagos State Government and especially the Commissioner for energy & Mineral Resources. We appreciate each and every one of you.
We thank you all for taking time out of your busy schedules to be here today. We hope to again have you with us as we graduate these women, and hear the great testimonials that we expect to come out of this project. Our prayer is that you will each also find help and support as you forge ahead in your various areas of endeavor. I welcome you all again, and I say ‘Thank you’.
Professor. Joseph Ezigbo MD