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North-East Governors’ Forum Pushes for Infrastructure Development, Regional Cooperation

North-East Governors’ Forum Pushes for Infrastructure Development, Regional Cooperation

By Matthew Eloyi

The North-East Governors’ Forum has reiterated its commitment to regional cooperation and addressing critical infrastructure needs.

This is contained in the communique issued at the end of its 10th meeting in Bauchi, with the governors of Adamawa, Bauchi, Borno, Gombe, Taraba, and Yobe states in attendance.

Chaired by Professor Babagana Umara Zulum, the forum underscored the importance of subregional cooperation and celebrated the achievements made under the governors’ leadership.

In the communique, the forum expressed concerns over the persistent neglect of the North-East in federal capital project allocations.

Highlighting the deplorable state of the Enugu-Maiduguri road and the destroyed railway along the same corridor, the governors called on the Federal Government to reconstruct these vital infrastructures and include the region in the National Infrastructure Plan for transitioning to compressed natural gas (CNG).

The forum also addressed the ongoing power crisis, noting the month-long blackout affecting the region. Meanwhile, the governors resolved to establish solar power plants generating at least 10 megawatts per state to mitigate future power outages.

In their deliberations, the governors highlighted the region’s reliance on a single transmission line for six states, deeming it a significant hindrance to industrial development. They urged the Federal Government to extend the 330KV transmission lines to enhance power supply and support economic growth.

The forum acknowledged the region’s untapped hydropower potential from the Kashimbilla and Dadin Kowa dams and called for the Ministry of Power to extend transmission lines to benefit from these resources.

Climate change and environmental degradation were also key discussion points. The forum emphasized the need for coordinated efforts to combat desertification and called on the Northeast Development Commission (NEDC) to consult with state governments on energy development projects.

Addressing food security, the forum resolved to continue investing in agricultural value chains and transforming subsistence farming into small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). They agreed to collaborate with OCP Africa to enhance agricultural productivity and support farmers with improved drought-resistant seeds and subsidized fertilizers.

Additionally, the governors reaffirmed their commitment to partnering with UNICEF to improve water and sanitation (WASH) coverage in the region.

The forum concluded by expressing gratitude to the Bauchi State Government for hosting the meeting and announced that the 11th meeting would be held in Damaturu, Yobe State, from August 30-31, 2024.


North-East Governors’ Forum Pushes for Infrastructure Development, Regional Cooperation

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