The FCT Minister, Malam Muhammad Musa Bello, has called for a more robust relationship with the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD), the planning and coordinating technical body of the African Union.
The Minister made this call when the National Coordinator/Chief Executive Officer of New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD) Nigeria, Princess Gloria Akobundu paid him a working visit in his office at Area 11, Garki I District, Abuja.
The Minister said that the position of Abuja as a pacesetter in the country would guarantee that any project successfully introduced and concluded by Nigeria’s development partners would be easily replicated in other parts of the country.
Malam Bello, therefore, requested that the NEPAD Coordinating Officer in the FCT work very closely with the FCT Administration’s Department of Planning, Research and Statistics, to do some ground work on the areas where the two organizations need to collaborate very closely.
His words: “I want to appeal that Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory, should be used as a model for any intervention programme that NEPAD has in Nigeria; deploy your staff, expertise and I assure you that we will give you the needed conducive environment to become a point of reference for other states of the federation.”
Malam Bello assured that the FCT Administration would cooperate with NEPAD wherever necessary to ensure that intervention projects in other parts of the country are also replicated in the FCT to ensure even spread.
“You may want to assign the relevant officers in your office to work out an Action Plan that we can work towards what we want to achieve during this 2017 and then we create a forum whereby maybe quarterly, I could sit down with you and review progress to see what we have achieved and what we need to do next,” he added.
Speaking earlier, the National Coordinator/Chief Executive Officer of New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD) Nigeria, Princess Gloria Akobundu said that NEPAD is a Pan-African organization established by African leaders and Presidents of various countries to address the needs of Africa as a continent.
The National Coordinator noted that NEPAD has concerned itself with addressing development challenges in Africa especially the need to reduce poverty and fast track infrastructural development.
Princess Akobundu, therefore, emphasized the need for collaboration by all stakeholders and development partners because its mandate is quite huge.
Muhammad Hazat Sule, FCAI
Deputy Director / Chief Press Secretary,
Wednesday, January 18, 2017.