Kogi State Government has promised its continuous collaboration with the UN-Habitat towards ensuring that the state is not left behind in programs that will accelerate sustainable economic growth and infrastructural development.
Kogi State Governor, Capt Idris Wada stated this in Kabba while declaring open the City consultations for State of Kogi Structure Plans Project.
The governor who was represented by his Deputy, Yomi Awoniyi, said the 2012 devastating flood that destroyed lives and properties, was the beginning of the Kogi State UN-Habitat relations, expressed joy that despite the state’s dwindling resources, government has paid its counterpart funds of $1.3million for the take off of the UN-Habitat partnership program.
The City Consultations the Governor explained is to ensure that communities make their input in having a well defined cities in the state, to guarantee healthy environment and to attract investments.
The governor disclosed that apart of the four selected cities of Okene, Kabba, Lokoja and Dekina, city structure plans would also be planned for all the Local Government Areas in the State.
The governor disclosed that towards preparing the structure plans adopted for Rapid urban profile, the communities are critical in the planning process, called for the input of the people to enable them have a well planned city.
The governor asked the people to scrutinize the urban profile reports through negotiation, consensus building and partnership, towards sustainable development of the state in general.
In a consultation overview, UN Habitat Regional Director for Africa, Prof Oyebanji Oyelaran Oyeyinka, said the city consultation is to offer validation to the field work by the consultants carried out in the last six months.
Prof Oyebanji commended the bold steps taking by the Kogi State Government towards laying foundation for sustainable development of cities in the state.
In a welcome remarks, Prof Olugbemiro Jegede, Secretary to Government of Kogi State, Represented by Tayo Aremu, Commissioner of Environment, said the city consultation program was a buy in program of the community to enable them make their input towards making Kabba a well planned urban settlement.
Prof Jegede, said the state is on the threshold of transformation, said the UN-Habitat program for sustainable environment,became necessary following rapid population growth and urbanization.
In their separate goodwill message, Segun Ogbonikan, SSA1, Kabba Bunu LGA and the Obaro of Kabba, Micheal Olobayo, expressed the joy of the people of Kabba for having the area included in the Kogi State Four cities structure plan in partnership with UN- Habitat.