The Niger State Government has commenced the formation of Integrated Development Plan (IDP) for Minna and Suleja cities to make them equitable, socially inclusive, engaging, resilient and self-sustaining cities.
Mr Michael Kinyanjui, Regional Metropolitan Officer, the United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat), led a delegation from UN-Habitat to the state for the preparation of the plan in Minna, the state capital, on Monday, January 6, 2020.
He said that the UN-Habitat was delighted with the commitment of the state government to an IDP for major cities on human settlement for their sustainability.
“Niger is the first state in Nigeria that has shown commitment to the implementation of urban support programme, this shows that the state is ready to work and see how to manage development process,” he said.
Kinyanjui explained that the formulation process of the IDP for Minna and Suleja would involve stakeholders’ participation to come up with their development process.
Also, Rossana Poblet, UN-Habitat Consultant for IDP in Niger, called for collaboration between Minna and Suleja emirate, adding that the IDP would involve individual participation.
She pledged to support the state on the IDP and called on the government to set up a technical team for Minna and Suleja.
“See the challenges and potentials. There are a lot of potentials and resources as well as active dynamic people such as technicians, communities, academia, and everybody to run and develop the plan,” she said.
Responding, Alhaji Ahmed Matane, Secretary to the State Government and Chairman of the State Technical Support Team, said that the state governor, Abubakar Bello, would ensure the implementation of the programme.
He said that the IDP would help harmonise and integrate major cities in the state that were expanding on daily basis towards their development.
Matane disclosed that many investors were already indicating interest in the IDP to invest and develop Suleja, adding that government would put in resources and make the environment conducive for the development of the plan.
“Stakeholders have already been sensitised to be part of the formulation process of the programme,” he said.
In his remarks, Prof. Mustapha Zubairu, Coordinator, Niger State Urban Support Programme, explained that the IDP would be stakeholders-driven to guide activities such as physical, social, economic, cultural and environmental issues in each of the cities.
He added that the effort for government to create an enabling environment for residents and investors to provide products, services and skills required for economic grow.
The Niger State Government is partnering with the UN-Habitat to develop an integrated development plan for Minna and Suleja cities.
By Rita Iliya