The Honourable Minister of State, Budget and National Planning, Prince Clem Ikanade Agba, has declared the 19th Edition of The Joint Planning Board / National Council on Development (JPB/NCDP) meeting open, in Abuja. The theme of the 19th Council is: National Development Planning in Nigeria in Nigeria: Issues and Challenges.
Speaking virtually, the Minister explained that the Medium National Plan 2021- 2025 and The Agenda 2025 had become imperative to ‘feed’ the ongoing preparation of the Medium Term National Development Plan (MTNDP) 2021-2025 and Nigeria Agenda 2050 due to be launched by the end of first (1st) quarter of 2021, as well as to ensure an all-inclusive National Plan that would champion the interest of both the National and Sub-National levels of Government towards ensuring an over-all and evenly spread economic growth and development across board.
Retrospectively, Agba said, the ERGP, 2017-2020 and NV20:2020 lapsed in December, 2020, hence the need to develop successor Plans, which would correct past mistakes as diagnosed from past plans. Current plans are: the Medium Term National Development Plan (MTNDP), 2021-2025 and Nigeria Agenda 2050 prepared to replace the out gone plans, respectively.
Following this, Agba stated that the JPB/NCDP meetings would carefully look at the challenges affecting development planning in Nigeria, which includes non-implementation of Plans/lack of political will and Plan indiscipline, among others.
He also mentioned that there was also the widely held but wrong notion that the plans were Federal Plans. ‘This partly explains the resolve at ensuring that all critical stakeholders, particularly the sub-national governments are part of the current plan development process to secure the necessary ownership and inclusiveness. So far, the process has been participatory, involving not only state actors but the Organized Private Sector, Civil Society Organizations, Women and Youth groups, People with Special Needs, etc.’, the Minister explained.
Agba went on to say, the Plan would support the implementation of the Nine (9) Priorities of Government during the first medium-term period. These priorities are: (a) stabilize the economy; (b) ensure energy sufficiency in power & petroleum products; (c) achieve agricultural & food security; (d) improve transportation & other Infrastructures; (e) drive industrialization; (f) improve health, education & productivity; (g) enhance social security & reduce poverty; and (h) fight corruption & improve governance.
He added that Government also intended to stabilize budget & expenditure, pursue concentric diversification of the economy and close the fiscal deficit. In addition, the strategy is to adopt proactive trade policies, prioritize self-reliance and home-grown solution. Infrastructural development will not be downplayed. Governance and Public Sector capacity will be strengthened by ensuring transparency in the utilization of resources.
Effort, according to Agba, would be made to review the Public Sector Contract System and also pay attention to regulatory issues. Overall, this Plan and your supportive actions will help Government to deliver better living conditions to Nigerians, the Minister enthused.
‘At this juncture, let me take this opportunity to reaffirm our resolve to continue to work together to support each other to deliver on these priorities that will lift our people out of poverty and create opportunities for productive employment to our people’ Agba pledged.
Earlier, the Permanent Secretary, Budget and National Planning who is also the Chairman-person/Technical committee of Joint Planning Board (JPB/NCDP), Mrs. Olusola Idowu, charged Governments at the sub-nationals and Stakeholders in the economic sector, to make useful inputs into the National Development plan 2050 currently being developed.
In her welcome address, the Permanent Secretary said ‘’the essence of our gathering here today is to have elaborate discussions with a view to proffering lasting solutions to the looming constraints in our National Development Planning efforts. The outcomes of our meetings will support the ongoing preparation exercise on the MTNDP 2021-2025 and Nigeria Agenda 2050’
JPB meeting is an annual event organized by the Federal Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning to provide a veritable platform for interaction and exchange of ideas among stakeholders from the States and Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
Goodwill Messages were delivered by the Permanent Secretary of FCTA, Mr. Olusade Adesola, President of the Manufacturers’ Association of Nigeria, Engnr, Mansur Ahmed, DG. Governors’ Forum, Mr. A B. Okauru, National Programme Manager, FCDO, Mr, Abu Umar.
Director Information,Budget and National Planning