The Federal Government in partnership with World Bank have launched a Multi-sectoral Crisis Recovery Project-Additional Financing (MCRP-AF) aimed at supporting the rebuilding of the North East states to rehabilitate as well as improve critical service delivery and livelihood opportunities in the region.
Speaking during the formal launch on Tuesday in Abuja, the minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, Hajiya Sadiya Umar Farouq, said the project was designed within the framework of the federal government’s commitment for continued support to the Borno, Adamawa and Yobe states by providing humanitarian and long-term economic recovery.
The additional financing of $176m is targeted to lay the foundations for future regional and coordinated investments that will improve access to regional markets, promote value-chain development and revive cross-border and regional trade.
The minister said the additional financing of the MCRP presents another opportunity for the federal government to further solidify the progress it has made and do more to ensure that citizens in need across the three participating states can recover their livelihoods and contribute to national development.
“We want them to have access to quality health care, education, water, sanitation and hygiene, improved engagement with elected officials. The project aims to facilitate Improved performance not only by building back better infrastructure but ensuring that the quality of services provided is raised,” she said.
Earlier, the Managing Director, North East Development Commission (NEDC), Alhaji Mohammed Alkali said the commission is excited about the inclusion of Nigeria, through the MCRP in the World Bank regional project for Lake Chad (PROLAC).
He noted that many of the problems faced in the North East are similarly felt in neighboring areas of Cameroon, Chad, and Niger.
Alkali said strong collaboration in planning for recovery and sharing of information is an essential requirement in addressing our collective challenges brought in by the insurgency and to combat the effects of climate change across the lake Chad Basin.
“The Commission, in line with its mandate to coordinate the efforts of recovery and development in the North-East Region has been working closely with the multilateral development banks and donor partners to ensure that the resources are properly targeted to address the critical needs of the people as prioritized by them, in line with international best practices.
“We also recognize the extremely large Resource Requirements to address all the Developmental needs in the North-East Region. Hence, the necessity to make the Development Eco-system more effective and efficient by co-creation of values for greater impact across the Humanitarian-Development-Peace Nexus,” Alkali said.
He also said that the additional focus on the agriculture value chain improvement in the next phase of the project complements the plans by the commission to revitalize agriculture beyond the subsistence level and encourage that will remit greater level of mechanization within the sector, resulting in improved productivity, more opportunities for sustainable livelihoods and addressing the food security challenges in the region.
He said, “We hope that when completed, this and other projects will have a bigger springboard for greater impact in the North-East.”
On her part, the representative of the World Bank and the task team lead, Serena Cavicchi called for the sustainability of the project.
Cavicchi also called for increased awareness and understanding of the project.
Also, the Chairman, Board Committee on Mambila Hydro and Multilateral Projects, Chief David Sabo Kente, called for the de-silting of Lake Chad as part of measures to tackling the multi-faceted challenges facing the Lake Chad region and concerned countries.