The Edo State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki on Friday commenced the process for the creation of a 30-year development plan to provide the government with necessary tools, guidelines and milestones for development planning in the overall interest of the state.
Obaseki while delivering his speech at a workshop for the development of Benin Master Plan and Edo State Development Plan said the plans will ensure a defined template for development and growth in the state.
The governor noted: “We are here to start a series of workshops that will lead to the creation of the Benin-city Master plan, Edo State Regional plan and Edo State 30 years Economic Development plan.
“I made it clear during our electioneering that one of the legacies of our administration will be to leave behind the compass, like a directional tool, which will indicate where Edo should be headed over the next three decades.
“So, this is in fulfillment of our electoral promise and it was a well thought-out out idea. We found out that one of the biggest challenges we have as a country and as a state is that we don’t plan; we have lost the culture of planning and we just keep moving on.”
Obaseki continued: “As an administration, one of the biggest concerns that people keep expressing is that: Mr. Governor, you and your Deputy, Philip Shaibu are doing well, charting a new direction for the state. What is the guarantee that when you leave office these things will continue?
“Who is the person that will come and take over and ensure that these continue? My response is that we may not find that person, but we can create that system that will ensure that what we have started continues.”
According to him, “Today, I think we are taking a very small step in the right direction; from the experiences of people who have done it right, if we do it properly, no matter the challenges ahead of us, we will have the clarity to go through it.
“From my experience in Government, I have been involved in Edo Government for more than 14 years, one of the biggest challenges that we face is waste.”
“Most of our resources are wasted because we do not have a plan. If you just look at the Ministries, Department and Agency of Government (MDAs) about six to seven of them are executing the same job because they are not talking to each other. Our children are going to inherit that plan,” he noted.
Dr. Kamal Azar, the Chief Executive Officer of SIRAJ Company, which is to develop the proposed plan, called on all stakeholders in the state to join hands with the government to ensure the realization of the plan.
He said: “The Master plan is very important in meeting the current challenges that we are going to be faced with. The regional plan is going to help us in improving the well-being of the people in areas where there are concerns about present and the future living conditions.
“This plan is important because Benin-city is growing and expanding without a plan; I call on all stakeholders in the state to join hands in this dream of executing this plan.”