Governor Godwin Obaseki has called for more public-private partnership in Edo State, even as he commissioned six projects in Igarra, Akoko-Edo Local Government Area.
The State Employment and Expenditure for Results (SEEFOR) completed the projects, which included a 300KVA transformer at Ogogoro road and a renovation of 2.4km Momodu Ajayi road at Akoko-Edo Local Government Area, Edo North Senatorial District of the state.
Speaking during the official opening of the projects at Igarra, Obaseki, represented by his Chief of Staff, Mr Taiwo Akerele, urged the people of the state to be more committed to the state’s development in order to enjoy a good standard of living.
He revealed that the state government adopted counterpart funding to complete the projects with international partners and the community also contributing to the development.
He said government is collaborating with the United Nations (UN), World Bank and other developmental partners to assist with resources through counterpart funding to ensure improved quality of life of our people.
He however explained that this partnership is not exclusive to Edo North.
He said, “What we have witnessed today is a replication of what is happening across the state. For us to continue to attract developmental effort, every community in the state must be organised and have a Community Development Association. They must have a community development account where resources can be pooled together to support developmental projects such as that of World Bank, EU and other developmental agencies. This is so because when communities contribute in project execution, they have ownership and protect such projects,” he said.
In addition, he commended the efforts of individuals who contributed to the counterpart funding on behalf of the community in the execution of some of the projects, while also calling on Nigerians in diaspora to contribute towards community development as a way of giving back to their fatherland.
Meanwhile, the head of Administration, Akoko-Edo Local Government, Dr Sunday Iyerumoh, claimed that the projects were laudable and exemplified the benefits of public-private partnership.
He noted that the Government cannot singlehandedly satisfy all the needs of its people and that it is up to well-meaning individuals to support the administration.
He said, “We had a situation where individuals had to pay counterpart fund on behalf of a community. We are seeing the dividend of cooperation and I am using this opportunity to solicit the support of groups, philanthropists and well spirited individuals to support the government in its developmental strides”, he said.
The World Bank and European Union fund the SEEFOR projects, and the collaboration is to hold for five years in Edo, Delta, Bayelsa and Rivers States.
Other commissioned projects include a renovated block of six classrooms at Comprehensive High School, Igarra; a block of three classrooms at Opuze Primary school; the renovation of a 550-metre long with asphalt and drainages, and installed street signs at Igarra.