Julius Berger Nigeria Plc and the Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG) Limited, in a unique corporate social responsibility initiative, have collaborated and rebuilt the historic Bonny Consulate Building in the ancient Bonny Kingdom.
The partnership for the project between Julius Berger and the NLNG began two years earlier when both corporations came together to sign a Memorandum of Understanding at Grand Bonny to commence the reconstruction of the historic Bonny Consulate Building.
At the project commissioning ceremony on Saturday, 5 March 2022, both Managing Directors of Julius Berger and the NLNG, Engr. Dr. Lars Richter and Dr. Philip Mshelbila respectively, celebrated the good relationship between the companies and the Bonny community.
Richter who described the project as far-reaching in significance also said it has a potential to boost the prominence of Bonny Island. He recalled that way back in the 15th century, Bonny was a major international trading post, which in the course of time has transformed into a central hub renowned for natural gas exploration and production in Nigeria.
Richter traced the relationship between Julius Berger and the Grand Bonny Kingdom to the mid-1990’s, that is, over 20 years to date, when as a major contractor, the company was entrusted with the development of infrastructural work for NLNG’s first liquefied natural gas plant on Bonny Island. Since entering the Isnad, Julius Berger, he added, has “continuously and harmoniously working on significant projects on the Island, including most recently, the construction of the Bodo-Bonny Road, which shall soon be the first road link into Bonny Island, and which, upon completion, will serve as a catalyst for the continued success of the Island and the greater advancement of the Niger Delta.”
Speaking further, Richter said, “…partnering with NLNG for the reconstruction of the Bonny Consulate Building, has provided Julius Berger the opportunity to deepen (Julius Berger’s) CSR efforts, and to contribute towards preserving the rich history of the Island, by applying our knowhow and expertise for the development of a purposeful building infrastructure.” With brimming professional confidence, the Julius Berger Managing Director added that, “…we constructed the consulate according to our trusted standards of quality, reliability and high-value partnership”.
The aim, he emphasized, is to ensure the greatest integrity in restoring the memory of the original Consulate Building while also delivering a highly functioning structure that futuristically stands to support the aspirations of His Royal Majesty, to diversify the economy of the Grand Bonny Kingdom through tourism.
Saying that Julius Berger is honoured to partner with NLNG for construction of the Bodo-Bonny Road and the Bonny Consulate Building considering the socio-economic impact of both projects, Engr. Dr. Richter on behalf of the Board and entire management of Julius Berger, thanked NLNG for their collaboration, which he said “stands strong and proud to support the continued development of Bonny Island.”
Richter also thanked the King and people of the ancient Grand of Bonny Kingdom for their continued trust and cooperation.
The Governor of Rivers State His Excellency, Chief Nyesom Wike, ably represented by the Deputy Governor, Dr (Mrs) Ipalibo Harry Banigo, His Royal Majesty King Edward Asimini William Dappa Pepple III, JP, CON, Perekule XI, the Amayanabo of Grand Bonny Kingdom, the chairman of the Bonny Council of Chiefs, Chief (Ambassador) Claude Dagogo-Wilcox, the Managing Director of the NLNG, Dr. Philip Mshelbila, and other important dignitaries at the commissioning ceremony also celebrated and praised the developmental Julius Berger-NLNG CSR partnership, which in a timely, qualitative and with exemplary professionalism and show of respect for communal values, successfully delivered the Bonny Consulate Building as desirably conceived.
The Julius Berger delegation to the event was led by the company’s Managing Director, Engr. Dr. Lars Richter. Other members of the Julius Berger entourage included Coordinator, Executive Projects, Koehler Kai-Uwe, Operations Manager, Bonny Consulate Building & Bodo-Bonny Road Project Engr. Ulrich Stahl, Technical Manager, Engr. Ingo Edinger; and Project Manager, Bodo-Bonny Road Project, Engr. Thomas Haug.