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In line with its Corporate Social Responsibility profile, Dangote Cement Plc, Ibese Plant, has announced a multi-million Naira educational scholarship award for 115 students from its 15 host communities for the 2017/2018 academic session.
The Company said the scholarship has become an annual event, meant to contribute to the educational development of the people and the area, and position them rightly in the scheme of things in Ogun state, and Nigeria in general.
Acting Plant Director, Dangote Cement, Louis Raj, during the presentation of cheques to the beneficiaries at Ibese Plant, explained that the management decided to increase the number of beneficiaries to 115 from the previous 80 to enable more children from the area to benefit.
He also said the decision was meant to encourage the young ones to go to school, as a sure way of building them mentally and morally to become good to themselves and the society.
According to him, the scholarship award is just one of the many Social Services Dangote Cement has committed itself to, and continue to provide other social services as a way of giving back to the society.
Raj said the scholarship award and other CSR projects were parts of the ‘thank you’ to the people for the maintenance and sustenance of peace in the area, as this made it easy for the company to operate smoothly.
He expressed the management’s gratitude to the royal fathers, and other community leaders, whose efforts contributed to the peace and tranquillity, urging that this be sustained.
The General Manager, Government and Community Relations, Joseph Alabi, while giving the breakdown of the scholarship, said the award covered 115 students of Yewa origin studying various course across several higher institutions of learning in the country.
Some of the schools where the beneficiaries are studying include polytechnics, universities, colleges of education, colleges of Technology, and secondary schools scattered across Ogun State.
Alabi also announced a list of candidates from the host communities, selected to attend the Dangote Academy for training in various arts and vocations that will equip them with the skills to work and do their own business afterwards.
“In Dangote Group, Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) to our communities is our watchword and focus. Giving scholarships, construction of roads and drainages, provision of transformers and other projects to connect communities to the national grid, among others, are what we do every year.
We award scholarships to communities in order to give the communities part of the wealth being created.
“I think everything is not about money, but the main benefit is to provide them the opportunity to have better education, and in the future, if they are good students, well-qualified, we will also offer them opportunities to work here at Ibese Cement Plant. This is part of CSR to ensure good relations, good partnership with our communities,” he added.
In his remark, the Olu of Imasayi, Oba Gbadebo Oni, said the people are happy with the way Dangote Cement is handling community issues, saying that Aliko Dangote deserved all the cooperation his people could muster for citing the cement plant in their land, and also taking care of the people and the communities.
He promised that his people would continue to maintain the peace in the communities, adding that the education scholarship is the best thing that can happen to the host communities, because quality education cannot be quantified in monetary terms.
He said the scholarships are a big relief to parents, who have to struggle so much to pay their children’s school fees, while expressing deep gratitude to the management of Dangote Cement.
Some years back, Dangote Cement instituted scholarships for indigenes of its host communities to any higher institution and secondary school, as the management expressed determination to making life more meaningful for them, and with a promise to ensure that all projects meet the specific need of each community.
Similarly, the Dangote Cement Plc, Gboko factory in Benue State, had also given out N20million worth of scholarships to indigent students from its host community, Mbayion, as part of its CSR in the last one year.
The Group also emerged Nigeria’s best Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Company according to a survey by Governance Advancement Initiative for Nigeria (GAIN), an NGO.
Dangote was the adjudged overall winner among 25 Nigerian and multinational companies operating in the country in 2016, scoring 6.3 per cent, followed by Nestle with 5.51 per cent, and Etisalat with 5.45 per cent.
Source: THE GUARDIAN