Nigeria, global partners unveil plans to rebuild devastated North East region

The World Bank
The World Bank

Nigeria and its global development partners have unveiled a plan on how to rebuild states in the North-Eastern part of the country devastated by insurgency, to restore hope to millions of internally displaced Nigerians in the region.

A pre-financing assessment meeting was held in Abuja last week between federal and states governments with the development partners, namely the United Nations, World Bank and the European Union in a bid to find solutions to the problems affecting the people.

During the meeting, the partners signed agreement to facilitate the assessment of the impact, with pledges to support the Nigerian government in financing the North East reconstruction effort.

As part of the agreement, the World Bank pledged to provide $800 million towards the rebuilding process, with other agencies pledging various contributions to the development of an institutional framework for financing from other development agencies to rebuild the region.

The assessment and validation exercises revealed the huge damage to the region estimated at about $9 billion, and over $6.4 billion required for the immediate and near term stabilization and recovery to cushion the devastation inflicted on the region between 2011 and 2015.

The $9 billion would be required for the rehabilitation and reconstruction of damaged infrastructures in the six North-East states of Adamawa, Bauchi, Borno, Gombe, Taraba and Yobe.

The assessments covered the three main components of Infrastructure and Social Services, Peace Building, Stability & Social Cohesion, and Economic Recovery with focus on cross-cutting issues such as governance and accountability, citizen engagement, institutional capacity for implementation, gender, youth, human rights and de-mining.

During the final assessment late last week in Abuja, the international development partners and donors reiterated their commitments to ensure that key findings of the assessments were implemented.

Specifically, the federal and state governments, along with the global partners, would now prioritize the needed interventions and projects, and develop an action plan.

The World Bank Sector Manager, Urban Development and Disaster Risk Management, Idrissa Dia, said the physical participation of the Bank at the validation workshop affirmed its commitment to support the overall success of the planned interventions.

The European Union’s Acting Head of Cooperation, Juan Casla, said the findings would enable the government and its humanitarian and development partners share understanding on implementation of set priorities.

The United Nations representative, Jean Gough, said the successes of the assessment have underlined its readiness to provide technical and other humanitarian support towards the achievement of the goals of the post-assessment phase of the planning.

The Nigeria Recovery and Peace Building Assessment (RPBA) is the process that assesses the physical, social and economic impacts of the crisis in the North-East, resulting in a report to guide the process of stabilization in the region through a variety of recovery strategies.

These strategies will help reduce suffering in affected communities, restore a sense of normalcy and regain the trust of people in the region.

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