By Chris Ochayi
ABUJA: The collective resolve to address the challenges in road development in the country is receiving adequate attention as the 27th National Council on Works kicked off in Bauchi, the Bauchi State capital.
Addressing the four- day Council Meeting with theme: “Infrastructure Delivery; the Maintenance Economy and National Prosperity”, Monday, the Director, Planning, Research and Statistics of Federal Ministry of Works and Housing, Jide Ode-Martins, described the theme for this year’s Council as timely.
He told the technical session that the meeting is apt considering the collective resolve to address the challenges in road development in the country within available resources.
He explained that the first 2 days of the meeting will be the technical meeting of the Directors, followed by the meeting of the Permanent Secretaries that will fine-tune the recommendations of the Directors’ meeting and other stakeholders.
The outcome of the Permanent Secretaries’ meeting, he added, will be presented to the Council meeting of States’ Commissioners and heads of relevant agencies under the Chairmanship of the Minister of Works and Housing for final deliberation.
Accordingly, Ode-Martins stated that the responsibility of the technical meeting of the Directors and other stakeholders was to create a solid and resourceful foundation by reviewing diligently the memoranda submitted by stakeholders.
He called on all the participants to make necessary contributions towards a successful Council Meeting.
“Esteemed delegates and officials, the timing of this meeting is very significant as it affords us the opportunity to think through and make necessary provisions in our various institutions towards adequate infrastructure delivery and cultivate maintenance culture to improve national prosperity,”* he said.
Earlier, in his welcome address the Permanent Secretary Bauchi State Ministry of Works and Transport, Engr Stephen Abubakar, said that the theme of the meeting was suitable to the present situation in the country where there was the need to rethink infrastructure delivery and its maintenance for socio-economic development of the nation.
He further said that the meeting would provide the required platform for participants in the works sector to articulate policies that would provide the enabling environment and guide the path that would lead the country in bridging infrastructure gaps through innovative delivery and effective maintenance culture.
In attendance at the opening ceremony were critical stakeholders of the Works sector from the 36 states of the federation and the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja and representatives of the private sector.