Nigeria: NEDC Validates 10-Year North East Master Plan to Facilitate Growth, Lift Region Out of Poverty

North East Development Commission (NEDC) yesterday validated a 10-year North East Stabilisation and Development Master Plan (NESDMP) aimed at facilitating a transformative growth of the region and lifting citizens in the region out of poverty.

The implementation of the North-East Development Plan would gulp the sum of $80 billion, which is equivalent to N31.05 trillion.

LEADERSHIP Friday reports that the North East region had suffered a lot of setbacks as a result of insurgencies as well as recent climate change effects.

At the unveiling of the 10 years North East Stabilisation and Development Master Plan (NESDMP) yesterday in Abuja, the secretary to the government of federation (SGF) Boss Mustapha said that full implementation of the master plan will no doubt bring needed growth and development to the region.

He recalled that NEDC was established to rebuild the North-East region following the unfortunate Boko Haram insurgency.

Mustapha stressed that in less than four years since its establishment, the Commission has made great strides towards achieving its mandate of managing funds for recovery, stabilization, and paving a path toward long-term social-economic development of the North-East region.

According to him, “This is a fulfillment of the campaign promise made by His Excellency, President Muhammadu Buhari to the people of the North-East Geo-Political Zone. Undoubtedly, we can boldly say that NEDC has turned out to be one of the important projects of this administration. All of us from the Region and even beyond are most grateful to Mr. President for his insight and legacy.

“In less than four years since its establishment, the Commission has already made great strides towards achieving its mandate of managing funds for recovery, stabilization, and paving a path towards long-term social-economic development of the North-East Region.

“It is gratifying to note that in implementing the Humanitarian-Development Peace building (HDP), NEDC has covered much ground with viable, demand-driven, and impactful projects that are changing the landscape of the North-East Region as we all witnessed today. | encourage everyone to visit the region and see the laudable projects being carried out by the NEDC.

“The North-East Stabilization and Development Master Plan (NESDMP), is a holistic roadmap for recovery, stabilization, expansion, and long-term socioeconomic development of the NE Region. Let me once more commend the Commission for coming, up with the Regional Master Plan which we are gathered here today to validate. Going forward, the Federal Government will swiftly approve the Regional Plan for immediate implementation by all relevant Stakeholders.”

He urged the NEDC to liaise with Federal Ministries, Departments and Agencies, States and Development Partners on the implementation of all measures approved in the Master Plan for the stabilization and development of the North-East Zone by the Federal Government.

To achieve the plan, he said this requires the NEDC to interface with Development Partners (local or international) and nongovernmental organisations to ensure synergy with other Stakeholders in line with the Master Plan.

He, however, called on all stakeholders in the Public and Private Sectors, Development Partners, especially Donors, to garner resources and invest optimally in the richly endowed but least-exploited North-East Region.

He said, “The region is witnessing improved security and gradually returning to sustainable peace and stability. The Federal Government will continue to provide the wherewithal for an enabling environment in the Region to allow all Stakeholders to play their complementary roles.”

In his remarks, the chairman of NEDC Maj Gen. Paul Tarfa (rtd) said the creation of NEDC to address the destructions in the North-East Region is among the best legacies of President Muhammadu Buhari.

“The 10-year North-East Stabilization and Development Master Plan is an ambitious roadmap for the recovery, stabilization and long-term socio-economic development of the North-East Region. The eleven pillars of the Master Plan comprise all the key sectors that the Region needs to focus on for it to return to a steady path of sustainable development. The cost of implementing the Master Plan stands at about Thirty-One Trillion Naira (N31 Trillion),” he said.

Also, the managing director of NEDC, Mohammed Alkali said in order to produce a holistic roadmap that could be implemented diversely and comprehensively in the North-East, the Commission in addition to baseline studies, conducted across the zone, consultations and engagements on the Master Plan were held at grassroots level in all the 112 LGAs in the Zone, as well as with Humanitarian, Development and Peacebuilding (HDP) Actors, CSOs/CBOs and the Private Sector at the Regional Level, Federal Legislators from the North-East, Federal MDAs, the Military, Police, Security Agencies amongst others.

His words: “The validation event we are witnessing today signifies the endpoint of production of the NESDMP, a document culminating from baseline studies and robust engagements with all critical Stakeholders.”

Alkali pointed out that the proposed 10-year NESDMP also encapsulates relevant aspects of President Muhammadu Buhari’s plan, Development Plans of Member States, Sectoral Development Plans and Roadmaps of Federal Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDA), and aligns with projects being executed by development partners in the zone.

He added: “It runs from 2020 to 2030 in four implementation phases; Recovery & Stabilization (2020 – 2021), Renewal (2022 – 2023), Expansion (2024 – 2025) and Sustainable Growth (2026 – 2030).

“It consists of 11 pillars – peaceful society; leadership in agriculture; healthy citizens; educated populace; flourishing trade; productive entrepreneurs; purposeful infrastructure; industrialization; memorable experience; protected environment; connected region.

“Its cost of implementation is forecasted at N31.05 trillion about (USD 80 billion); substantially coming from the Private Sector. It contains over 500 Schemes/Programmes/Projects.”

The MD revealed that the Commission had been executing modest projects that are necessary for humanitarian assistance, recovery, stabilization, peace building, and development of the region.

According to him, “Our interventions cut across various sectors – education, health, WASH, agriculture, transport, housing, youth empowerment, reintegration, social cohesion, and capacity building, among others.”

On his part, the governor of Borno State and the chairman of North East Governors Forum, Prof. Babagana Zulum said without a clear road map, no meaningful achievement could be made regardless of the enormity of resources available.

Zulum stressed that if the recovery and development of the regional master plan is strategically implemented, it would not only complement what the governors are doing in the states by investing in transformation projects but also serve as tipping points for the transformation of the region.

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