Nigeria to prioritise infrastructure

Timothy Choji, Abuja

The Nigerian government will continue to provide the essential infrastructure needed for the improvement of the lives of its citizens.

Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo stated this at the launch of a compendium of achievements of a nongovernmental organisation, Nigeria Infrastructure Advisory Facility NIAF. Professor Osinbajo used the opportunity to stress government’s position on moving Nigeria out of recession.

According to the Vice President, the launch of the compendium is a welcome development, because it brings to public knowledge the contributions of NIAF to the development of the country.

Professor Osinbajo said that the Nigerian government was committed to the revitalisation of the economy in line with its change agenda.

“This publication records the milestones and lessons learned across key sectors of Nigerian infrastructure delivered through the partnership between NIAF and the Nigerian Government. Since taking office in May 2015, this administration has committed to a change agenda that tackles these specific issues. One of our key areas of focus is on revitalising the national economy. The support of the Directorate for International Development, DFID, through the NIAF programme has been immeasurable,” he said.

Professor Osinbajo stressed that through its numerous activities, NIAF has related well with various government agencies with concerted efforts towards both infrastructural and capacity development, as it showed a lot of commitment in partnering with the government.

“NIAF has a strong working relationship with many of the key Ministries, Departments and Agencies of the Nigerian government. NIAF upholds our administration’s emphasis on monitoring and evaluation, towards a more transparent and effective government that provides increased benefits for its citizens.”
“NIAF is providing invaluable technical assistance across key sectors of government. This includes its support through the Advisory Power Team in my office. NIAF’s goal to enhance the management of Nigeria’s infrastructure development towards power sector reform, more impactful capital spending, transport, roads, climate change and urban planning and development is aligned with and invaluable to this administration.,”
the Vice President stated.

He thanked the British government for funding the activities of NIAF in Nigeria through DFID.

The Vice President said that the Buhari led-government would continue to give more attention to the welfare of Nigerians. He also said that the government was working hard to move the country out of recession.

More investment
Head of the Nigerian Office of DFID, Ben Mellor, who noted that high foreign exchange rate had affected Nigeria’s economic development, said that the UK would offer the needed support for Nigeria to get out of recession.

Mellor advised that investors should be encouraged to spend at least $70 billion yearly, in order to overcome the present economic challenges.

The Managing Director of Nigeria Infrastructure Advisory Facility, Mark Tomlinson said “Nigeria was key to the development of Africa, so its economy must be unlocked quickly.”

He said that UK had faced a similar situation in the past, when it privatised its power sector but it came out of it so there is hope for Nigeria.

Tomlinson said that the launch of the compendium was to celebrate the friendship between Nigeria and UK.