Gov. Idris Wada of Kogi on Friday said that the state requires about N210 billion for its overall development.
Mr. Wada stated this while the addressing United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat) Dekina City Consultation meeting on Friday.
He attributed the under-development and dearth of infrastructures in the state to paucity of funds.
The governor, represented by his deputy, Yomi Awoniyi, said the average total annual revenue accruing to the state from the Federation Account and Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) was about N80 billion
He said that 80 to 90 per cent of the total revenue was often expended on workers’ salaries leaving only N5billion for development, describing it as a far cry from the N210 billion required to meet the developmental needs of the state.
“What we have for development is about N5billion and that is why the state has remained the way it is and this is also the main reason why Gov. Idris Wada goes about looking for development partners,” he said.
Mr. Wada underscored the rationale behind the Structure Plans Project in four cities of Kabba, Okene, Lokoja and Dekina.
He said that development partners, including the ADB, World Bank, the UN and others, often asked for development plans each time the state approached them for assistance.
“Everywhere we went, they kept asking, where is your plan. It became clear to us that for us to get additional funds and assistance there have to be a good and comprehensive plan for us to present to our development partners”, he added.
He pointed out that the City Declaration Document to be produced at the end of the consultations would be passed to the state House of Assembly for legislation to make it a law for successive governments to work with.
Earlier, Oyebanji Oyelaran-Oyeyinka, the UN-Habitat Regional Director for Africa said the organization was committed to ensuring that Kogi emerged one of the highly developed states in Nigeria in the next 10 years.
Mr. Oyelaran-Oyeyinka said on completion, the project would provide information about the state, showcase its potentials and attract investors.
He added that the Urban Observatory system of the UN would soon be introduced in the state.
The Ejeh of Dekina, Usman Obaje, thanked the State Government and the UN-Habitat team for selecting Dekina as one of the four cities to benefit from the programme.
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