By Ndahi Marama, Maiduguri
The Secretary to the Borno State Government, Usman Jidda Shuwa has said that Boko Haram insurgency and insecurity have stifled Nigeria’s economic growth and development.
According to him, insecurity has varied devastating effects on the socio-economic and political landscape of the country.
Shuwa raised the alarm Tuesday at the 20th Joint Planning Board (JPB) National Council on Development Planning (NCDP) meeting held at the Government House, Maiduguri, the state capital.
While declaring the 3-Day summit open with the theme: “Managing the Nigerian Economy for Sustainable Development in a Challenging Environment,” he disclosed: “The most daunting of these challenges, is the issue of insecurity characterized by the unending Boko Haram insurgency.
He added that the security challenges include criminal activities of banditry and kidnapping as well as socioeconomic threats to business outfits.
He attributed the socio-economic threats in the state to unemployment, poverty and youths restiveness.
Shuwa lamented that the negative effects of insecurity are widespread with adverse effects of stifling economic growth and development.
On Borno’s insecurity devastating effects, he said: “Insecurity has devastated the economic livelihood of our people at the local level in farming and commercial activities among others.
Besides insecurity, he said that the COVID-19 pandemic has a crippling effect on the global economic system.
He said insecurity has to be overcome for any strategic plans to have impacts on the socio-economic development of the country.
He added that it will help stimulate and sustain public confidence and trust in addressing challenges of economic growth and development.
The United Nations Humanitarian Coordinator in Nigeria, Edward Kallon, who was represented by Miss Esty Sutyoko disclosed that 4.4 million people in the Northeast are facing acute hunger at the peak of the lean season, as well as into the rainy season.
He lamented that humanitarian assistance is increasing; while funding is declining.
The State’s Commissioner of Finance and Economic Planning, Adamu Lawan said: “There will be no development where there is no security and there will also be no development where there is COVID-19 pandemic.
On the impact of the economic summit, he said: “Peace has returned to the state, while people are coming to showcase what is happening in the state,” adding that it will boost the image of the state with the building of confidence for the organised private sector (OPS) to invest.
He said as the government has no business in running industries, the private sector manages them efficiently.
The Commissioner however pointed out that the summit which is expected to end on Thursday 5th August 2021, would come out with a communique with a view to addressing all issues bedevilling economic development and insecurity.
While acknowledging excellent collaboration with the Federal Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs and the Governors of Borno, Adamawa and Yobe states, she said: “We’re working to alleviate suffering and save lives of people affected by 12 years of conflict in the three states.”
She said that the relationship is in a comprehensive and sustainable manner.
According to her, the crisis in the northeast is a complex emergency and presents an intricate web of issues that require collective collaboration of different actors in search of solutions.
She said the UN will commence a new cycle of humanitarian programme planning for 2020 to reduce the needs, risks and vulnerabilities of the affected people.
“We’ll provide durable solutions where feasible and safe to do,” she said, noting that this is the worst outlook in four years.