Monday, May 9, 2016

Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs, UNDP reiterate commitment to N’Delta development.

Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs and United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) have re-emphasized their commitment to the sustenance of infrastructural and socioeconomic development of the Niger Delta region.This disclosure was made in Abuja on Friday, 6th May, 2016, when the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Usani Uguru Usani hosted a delegation of the United Nations, led by the new United Nations (UN) Resident/ Humanitarian Coordinator, Ms. Fatma Samoura, who also doubles as the UNDP Resident Representative in Nigeria.
The Minister commended the efforts of UNDP in strengthening relations with the Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs and the oil-rich Niger Delta region. He also called for more collaborations of the United Nations’ organ with the Ministry, in order to give its developmental efforts a proper focus in the region. Usani urged UNDP to invest in skills acquisition programmes for the youths and women of the region, and empower them financially. He also appealed to the organization to carry the Ministry along in all its developmental policies and programmes, for the benefit of the people of Niger Delta and Nigeria at large. The Minister revealed that the Ministry was putting finishing touches to the establishment of a trust fund for the development of the region, in collaboration with the Ministries of Finance and Justice. In his remarks, the Minister of State for Niger Delta Affairs, Prof. Claudius Daramola commended the United Nations in its efforts to sustain Niger Delta development, and reiterated the Ministry’s readiness to work with any policy or body that is aimed at improving the living standard of the people of the region. Earlier, Ms. Fatma Samoura recounted UN support to the Federal Government’s Presidential initiative on Niger Delta, in 2007, at a national conference, which led to the creation of the Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs in 2008. In her words: “The recommendation of the conference led to the establishment of the Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs in 2008.”She also noted that UNDP has been supportive of the Ministry on capacity building, in the areas of programme management, conflict prevention and community mobilization. The UN Representative pledged the continued support of the global organization to the Ministry, to ensure accelerated and effectively coordinated development in the Niger Delta region.

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