The Dangote Coal Mines Limited has disbursed scholarship funds to members of its host communities in Benue and Kogi states.
This is coming barely one year into coal mining operations at Effeche Akpalli in Ugbokolo Ward of Okpokwu Local Government of Benue State. But the largesse was not limited to them.
The gesture was replicated in Ankpa, Kogi State, where scholarship funds were also distributed to members of the coal mining communities. And as well at the Dangote Cement Plant in Gboko, Benue State, where the host community also benefited from scholarship funds initiative.
The exercise is part of the company’s annual Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) scheme for host communities, and this, it should be noted, has been running for upwards of a decade.
In 2022, the Group President of the Dangote Industries Limited Aliko Dangote, had announced series of scholarship schemes for communities hosting the Dangote Sugar Refinery in Numan, Adamawa State.
In Benue, ten members of the Effeche community who are currently studying in higher institutions of learning benefitted from the fund.
The company’s contribution to educational development in Nigeria has been described as immeasurable having constructed multimillion naira edifices and hostels in some selected universities in the country.
The company is adjudged to be Africa’s largest donor and second biggest employer of labour after government in Nigeria.
Dillip Taman, Head of Dangote’s mining operation in Benue, said the scholarship was part of the Corporate Social Responsibility of the company, adding that the company takes the plights of its host communities very seriously.
He said the company is kick-starting several other projects contained in the Community Development Agreement.
The chairperson of the Okpokwu Local Government Amina Audu, who was represented by the Leader of the Legislative Council, urged the beneficiaries to use the money efficiently, while urging the company not to relent in the annual scholarship scheme.
A community leader Samuel Ameh said the community was desirous of ensuring a smooth operational turf for the company, saying a peaceful coexistence was a major prerequisite for profitability and community development.