Niger Delta to get new regional master plan, says Ndoma-Egba
The Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) might adopt a new regional master plan for an integrated development of the region.The commission revealed that the first master plan, which was launched in 2007 was abandoned by previous boards of the NDDC.
Chairman of NDDC Governing Board, Senator Victor Ndoma-Egba stated this when members of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) Niger Delta Task Force, led by Albert Akpomudje visited the Commission’s headquarters in Port Harcourt yesterday.
He explained that since it would be difficult to develop the Niger Delta without an integrated plan, the board mooted the idea of either revalidating, upgrading or coming up with a new master plan because the indices used in the previous plan were no longer valid.
While regretting that the carefully crafted master plan was abandoned almost as soon as it was launched, he however, pointed out that the Niger Delta Regional Development Master Plan, which had a life span of 15 years was becoming dated.
“We are determined to do the needful and fortunately we have received a lot of interests from partners, the European Union, the United States Government and the Government of Germany to support us in either revalidating, updating, upgrading or coming up with a new plan. But that plan is imperative if we must develop in a consistent and sustainable manner,” he said.
Ndoma-Egba stated that the challenge of peace in the Niger Delta was the challenge of development added that, “In achieving that peace we are ready to engage with everybody to ensure that peace returns to this region.”
He said the Federal Government had in the last few months demonstrated its desire to address the concerns of the Niger Delta and commended the initiatives of the Acting President Yemi Osinbajo, who he said, had shown a lot of new zeal by making several visits and promises to the region.
Speaking, Akpomudje said the association could not fold it arms and watch while the Niger Delta region was being torn apart by crises.He said that the NBA deemed it necessary to set up the Niger Delta Task Force to assist stakeholders and the various tiers of government to bring an end to the crisis in the region.