Governor Mai Mala Buni of Yobe State has appealed to the North-East Development Commission, NEDC, to intervene in the provision of quality education, agriculture, healthcare, youth empowerment and road construction in the state.
DAILY NIGERIAN reports that the NEDC is a federal government’s new agency created to help in the reconstruction of the insurgency ravaged region.
Speaking when the NEDC’s chairman, Paul Tarfa, led his board and management team on a courtesy visit at Government House Damaturu, the governor solicited for partnership in the rebuilding of the state.
The governor singled out education, agriculture, healthcare, youth empowerment and road construction as some of the sectors that he wanted the commission to partner the state government to improve.
“We need the support of the North-East Development Commission to get our education right. We need you to support capacity building for our teachers and principals.
“We need you to rebuild our classrooms that have been destroyed by Boko Haram and provide our students with access to new learning facilities.
“We need to make rapid progress in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics so that our students can have the confidence of becoming tomorrow’s leaders in scientific breakthroughs.
“We know they have the talent to become coders and even inventors. We just need to show them that it is possible. And we would need your support to that,” he said.
While lamenting that 70 percent of the population of the state engages in agriculture, most farming activities remain largely subsistent, the governor attributed the situation to poor access to modern farming tools, poor access to improved seeds and near zero access to credit facilities.
“It is therefore our hope that the North-East Development Commission would partner with us to accelerate agricultural mechanisation in the state and provide the support that our farmers so desperately need,” he stressed.
Speaking on youth empowerment, the governor explained that when equipped with right skills, the youths could become useful members of the society and contribute to economic development.
“The Yobe State Government reckons that youth empowerment is the necessary next step to take as we consolidate on the improved security situation in the state so that we are able to channel the energies of our youths into productive uses.
“The North-East Development Commission can help the process by working with us to provide skills training for our youths in key trades and crafts so that, going forward, these youths can set up their own businesses, make some money and help their own families,” Mr Buni said.
The governor, therefore, appealed to the commission to support the state in the construction of two key roads, which he said would facilitate the gradual return of peace in the state.
“We would like the commission to help build two key roads in the state to help the process of reconstruction and accelerate the return to full economic activity.
“These are the Gujba-Ngalda road and the Nguru-Kumaganam-Mayori road.
“The Gujba-Ngalda axis is an area that had suffered so much disruption from Boko Haram’s ruthless insurgent activities.
“People in the area have now returned to their homes. But the difficult terrain has made a return to normalcy so difficult, as people cannot go to and return from their farms and markets easily.
“Building the Gujba-Ngalda road would surely make things a lot easier for the people and make it even easier for them to rebuild their lives,” he said.