The Nigerian Institute of Town Planners (NITP) has appealed to the Ondo State Government to domesticate the Urban and Regional Planning Act, 2004 for effective development of the state.
Mr Olutoyin Ayinde, the National President of NITP, who made the appeal at a news conference on Tuesday, July 13, 2021 in Akure, the state capital, said that physical planning of the environment would accelerate development across all strata.
“When I took office as national president, I said it was fitting to assess the state of physical planning in the country because I realised planning had not occupied its place and this is the 10th state I would be visiting.
“Physical planning is the bedrock of development. The Nigerian Urban and Regional Planning Law 1992, which became an Act, in 2004 was enacted.
“The law prescribes that plans should be prepared from national to state and to local government level. To make it possible, it is required that this law should be domesticated at the state level.
“The truth is that Ondo is yet to domesticate the law,” he stated.
The NITP president, therefore, urged the Gov. Oluwarotimi Akeredolu to intervene and show adequate commitment and ensure the full implementation of the law.
Ayinde said that it was worrisome that only three states in the country that had made moves to domesticate the law.
“Lagos and Ogun have domesticated it while Oyo State is trying to do so.
“We make this appeal with all sense of responsibility because true town planning is the answers to good governance.
“It is a fair reflection of what government is, for town planning is for actualising government’s policies,” he said.
According to him, development without plan leads to chaos.
Ayinde urged the government to demonstrate political will, provide adequate funding and procure requisite tools for its town planning officials to effectively perform their duties.
“We understand that the governor is investing massively in road infrastructure.
“However, this investment has to be within the framework of physical development plans prepared by qualified town planning professionals so that they would not be efforts in futility.
“And we urge you to show commitment on the MoU entered into with the UN-Habitat to prepare master plans for Akure, Owo and Ore, as well as urban regeneration in 10 selected towns,” Ayinde stated.
The president enjoined the state government to make use of human resources available in the state for its development.
“The resources to plan the state already reside here. There is no need to call for foreign help or partners to build the state.
“What is left for the state is to harness resources in existence and put square pegs in square holes, so that we can get excellent results,” Ayinde advised.
He said that the institute would be available to play any role that would lead to development in the country particularly in the state if invited to lend its support.
By Alaba-Olusola Oke