…… Seeks robust media partnership
By Ndahi Marama, Maiduguri
The Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, Hajiya Sadiya Umar Farouk has said that the federal government under the leadership of President Muhammadu Buhari will continue to give maximum support to the North East Development Commission, NEDC to ensure that it achieve all it’s mandate in the reconstruction, rehabilitation and resettlement of all victims of over decade atrocities posed by insurgents in the region.
Farouk said, to achieve the mandate, there is the need to have a robust partnership with the Commission and the Media practitioners who played a significant role in national development.
The Minister who was represented by Group Captain Sadiq Shehu stated this during a Parley with some Media Executives drawn from across the country and tour of projects executed by NEDC which took place on Monday at the Commission’s Headquarters in Maiduguri, Borno state.
The occasion was organized by NEDC and ‘The Eugenia Abu Media Team’.
She applauded the concerted efforts made by President Buhari, governors of the six North East states, security agencies and the Media in the fight against Boko Haram, which according to her, has brought about relative peace in the region.
“With the relative peace currently witnessed in the North East, the federal government under the leadership of President Muhammadu Buhari and through my ministry will continue to give maximum support to the NEDC to ensure that it achieve all it’s mandate in the reconstruction, rehabilitation and resettlement of all victims of over decade atrocities posed by insurgents in the region.
” But to achieve the mandate, there is the need to have a robust partnership with the Commission and the Media practitioners who played a significant role in national development. I want to urge all of you here to partner with NEDC to bring sustainable development in the region”. She said.
In his welcome address, the Managing Director of NEDC, Alkali Goni appreciated all the Media Executives for honouring the invitation.
He said, NEDC since inception through Act No. 7, 2017 has continued to live up to expectation by receiving and managing funds allocated to it by the federal government and International Donors for resettlement, rehabilitation, integration and reconstruction of roads, houses, business premises of victims of insurgency and terrorism as well as tackling the menace of poverty, illiteracy, ecological problems and other related environmental or developmental challenges in Borno, Yobe, Adamawa, Gombe, Bauchi and Taraba states.
While highlighting some of the achievements recorded, Alkali said, “the commission has donated food and non- food items, hospital equipments, educational materials, construction of 1000 houses in Ngom village of Mafa local government area of Borno state, which was commissioned and as well, handed over to beneficiaries.
“In one of our interventions in 2020, NEDC donated 100 Pick-up Vans and Trucks to Nigerian Armed Forces and other paramilitary agencies fighting Boko Haram terrorists in the region.
“To address menace of the Covid -19 pandemic, it also donated 18 ambulances and Personal Protection Equipments, PPEs to the Nigerian Army and the Airforce, as well as 8 Federal Medical institutions to fight the pandemic.
“Similarly, the Federal Medical Institutions that benefitted from the ambulances and medical consumables include; University of Maiduguri Teaching Hospital, Abubakar Tafawa Balewa Teaching Hospital, Bauchi, Federal Neuro Psychiatric Hospital, Maiduguri, Federal Medical Centres in Azare, Nguru, Gombe, Yola and Jalingo, as well as commenced the construction of 10,000 housing units as earlier approved by President Mohammadu Buhari.
“Recently, the Commission handed over assorted bags of food and non food items to the Borno State Government purposely to be used for the feeding of over 67,000 repentant Boko Haram members and their families undergoing deradicalization process in the state.
“Likewise, as part of post insurgency development efforts, the Commission last Wednesday 20th July, 2022 handed over medical equipments to 7 Division Military Hospital, Federel Neuro Psychiatric, FNPH, and University of Maiduguri Teaching Hospital, UMTH Maiduguri to compliment efforts of the government in the fight against Boko Haram and managing plight of victims.
“This is in addition to training and retraining of victims of insurgency by providing them with starter kits and other incentives for economic self- reliant and empowerment.
“The Commission also unveiled the multi million edifice it constructed to the University of Maiduguri (UNIMAID) that would be used as Centre for the Study of Violent and Extremism (CSVE), even as it donated the cheque of N48.3 million to support Cancer Research at the institution.” Alkali stated.
He however told the gathering that, the Commission would on Tuesday 6th December, 2022 flag off a ground breaking ceremony for the construction of 22.5km Jere Bowls Road Network in Zabarmari and visit to NEDC projects and Internally Displaced Persons, IDPs camps in the state.
In his remarks, the NEDC Chairman General Tarfa identified Media as a vital tool for development in any society, and assured that the NEDC will continue to partner with the media shocase it’s projects and programmes in the region.
The parley attracted various heads of media agencies, the Academia and other stakeholders who later embarked on tour of projects executed by the Commission in Borno.