PIND holds Niger Delta Devt fo­rum in Uyo, Nov 14

Sunday Trust - - NEWS - By Mau­reen Onochie

The Foun­da­tion for Part­ner­ship Ini­tia­tive in the Niger Delta (PIND) in col­lab­o­ra­tion with Mar­ket De­vel­op­ment in the Niger Delta (MADE) will hold the sixth edi­tion of its Niger Delta De­vel­op­ment Fo­rum (NDDF) 2017, with the theme, “The Fu­ture in Our Hands : A State-Led Frame­work for Plan­ning and De­vel­op­ment in the Niger Delta.”

In a press state­ment made avail­able to news­men in Abuja on Fri­day, PIND’s Knowl­edge Man­ager, Chichi Nno­ham-Onye­jekwe, said this year’s fo­rum which fol­lows on from the rec­om­men­da­tions of the 2016 fo­rum will fo­cus on PIND’s col­lab­o­ra­tion with both state and non-state ac­tors on the method­olo­gies for long-term plan­ning and im­ple­men­ta­tion for do­mes­tic re­source mo­bi­liza­tion and in­clu­sive growth in the Niger Delta re­gion.

The rec­om­men­da­tions of the 2016 fo­rum called for a bot­tom-up ap­proach to re­gional de­vel­op­ment and gov­er­nance along­side a strong em­pha­sis on state gov­ern­ments to de­velop a frame­work for strate­gic plan­ning for de­vel­op­ment, com­pet­i­tive­ness, and in­clu­sive growth.

Nno­ham-Onye­jekwe said that the event which will be held in Uyo, will also show­case work­ing mod­els for de­vel­op­ment plan­ning that can trans­form states and share prac­ti­cal ways of achiev­ing de­vel­op­ment plan­ning.

The fo­rum which en­joys the sup­port of USAID’s Strength­en­ing Ad­vo­cacy and Civic En­gage­ment (SACE) will of­fer a unique op­por­tu­nity to all par­tic­i­pants to frame and in­flu­ence the dis­course, hold con­sul­ta­tions and re­search.

Nno­ham-Onye­jekwe also quoted the Ex­ec­u­tive Di­rec­tor of PIND, Dr. Dara Akala, as say­ing the re­ces­sion has given the re­gion an op­por­tu­nity to look be­yond oil.

“The re­ces­sion, for good or for ill, has given the re­gion an op­por­tu­nity to think be­yond oil. We must now crit­i­cally as­sess the sec­tors that can drive growth, in­crease the tax base for re­source mo­bi­liza­tion and con­trib­ute to a truly di­ver­si­fied, ro­bust econ­omy. None of these will be pos­si­ble with­out plan­ning,” he said.

PIND noted that the fo­rum will also aim to share frame­work and tools that will in­form de­ci­sion­mak­ing, guide pol­icy ac­tions and pro­vide clear di­rec­tion to sus­tain­able growth of the Niger Delta states’ unique re­sources and busi­ness en­vi­ron­ment.

“The two-day meet­ing will pro­vide shared ac­count­abil­i­ties and trans­parency amongst state gov­ern­ments and re­gional stake­hold­ers for co­or­di­nat­ing in­tra-state, in­ter-state and re­gional ac­tiv­i­ties, as well as pro­vid­ing reg­u­la­tory sta­bil­ity to pro­mote ef­fi­cient and ef­fec­tive ex­ter­nal stake­hold­ers’ in­vest­ments into the states,” Nno­ham-Onye­jekwe said.

The state­ment went fur­ther to ex­plain that this year’s NDDF is in­tended to align with the broader vi­sion of the fed­eral and re­gional strate­gic di­rec­tion in the the­matic ar­eas of fo­cus and op­er­ate based on the pro­vi­sion of rel­e­vant laws and reg­u­la­tions in the coun­try. It will pri­or­i­tize key turn­around in­ter­ven­tions and en­ablers to gen­er­ate more tan­gi­ble im­pact.

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