The Federal Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning, has commenced the 20th edition of the Joint Planning Board (JPB)/National Council on Development (NCDP) meetings, in Maiduguri, Borno State.
The meeting with theme: “Managing the Nigerian Economy for Sustainable Development in a Challenging Environment is to chart a workable means of improving the Nigerian economy to overcome the challenges posed by Covid-19 and chat a realistic pathway to addressing the trending insecurity that was affecting sustainable economic growth and development across all the states of the federation.
Welcoming delegates to the Three-day meeting, scheduled to run from 3rd to 5th of August, 2021, the Permanent Secretary, Budget and National Planning, Mrs. Olushola Olayinka Idowu, commended the Bornu State Government for the giant strides recorded particular in the area of infrastructural development and Agriculture despite security challenges faced by the State.
Addressing the Council via zoom, the Permanent Secretary urged all Representatives of States in attendance to encourage their respective Governors to engage in commercial agricultural value-chain to reduce unemployment particularly in the Rural and Under-Served Areas of the nation.
She stated that over 2.3 Trillion Naira was released by the Federal Government under the Economic Sustainability Plan to grow and diversify the Nigerian Economy with specific reference to Agriculture and Industry across the States of Federation.
As a reminder, Idowu stressed that the choice of Borno State and the theme for the year’s event was apt considering the State’s potentials to easily build its economic base in spite of the rising level of insecurity.
She implored State government to continue to collaborate with the Federal Government towards effective implementation of all the resolutions/decisions of the Joint Planning Board/National Council on Development Planning (JPB/NCDP) to fast-track Nigerian developmental objectives with particular emphasis on food security.
The Permanent Secretary also appreciated the efforts of the State Commissioners and Permanent Secretaries of Budget and Economic Planning and other Stakeholders, for being true partners in the development of the country.
In his keynote address, the Secretary to the Bornu State Government, Alhaji Usman Jidda Shuwa, stated that the challenges faced by the nation was daunting but not insurmountable.
Declaring the Council open, Alhaji Shuwa said “What is required is our collective resolve, relentless determination and total commitment to the course we have set for ourselves” He added “It has become a matter of strategic imperative for States and Local Governments across the country to vigorously and independently pursue the idea of diversification of their economy and also involve an effective and result oriented tax regime in order to ensure less dependence on statutory allocations from the Federation Account,’’ among others.
These measures, according to him, would enable them articulate a suitable and sustainable trajectory of development, based on their individual economic characteristics and social peculiarities.
The First technical session for Day One, featured panelists who discussed on topics like : Tackling Humanitarian Challenges, with Interactive Panel discussions by State officials on Humanitarian Crisis, causes, Effects and solutions; Managing Insecurity in Nigeria with discussions on : Security Challenges in Nigeria, Implications for Sustainable Economic Growth and Development.
The SA/Security to Governor of Borno State, Brig-General Ishaq Abdullahi, who was the lead speaker X-rayed the different perspectives and propose options for sustainable growth and development in the face of insecurities.
The Second Technical sessions, focused on Insecurity in Nigeria: Causes, Consequences and Solutions, with Major General Babagana Monguno (RTD), National Security Adviser (ONSA) as the lead paper presenter.
Moreso, the Director Macro-Economic Analysis, Budget and National Planning, Mr. David Adeosun anchored and presented a paper on: Managing Humanitarian issues through the MTNDP 2021-2025 and Nigeria Agenda 2050 with a focus on how the plans would address Humanitarian issues.
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