The federal government has launched the Strategic Implementation Work Plan (SIWP) to provide a coordinated framework for implementing developmental interventions in the Niger Delta region.
The Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Senator Godswill Akpabio, while speaking at the launch in Abuja, yesterday, described it as a giant leap in positioning the region to attain its pride of place as a prosperous oil-rich area, able to realise its developmental goals.Akpabio stated that one of the critical instruments his ministry identified to trigger the anticipated change in the region was the SIWP.
He said: “It is worthy of mentioning that there had been tremendous efforts and commitments on SIWP before we assumed office in 2019, but we have been able to attain this threshold by strengthening SIWP to deliver on planned objectives which resulted in its official presentation today.
“As you are aware, the SIWP is not a new initiative in the Niger Delta region, it emerged as a result of concerted and several high-level political engagements by the federal government with key stakeholders of the region in 2016.
“It is a collaborative framework designed to coordinate all development interventions of both government agencies and private organisations operating in the Niger Delta region. SIWP was initially anchored by the Office of the Vice President before the ministry took charge due to its oversight mandate in the Niger Delta region.
“It is interesting to add that we have enjoyed a good collaboration with the government of the United Kingdom, which supported this initiative by providing technical support through the Stakeholder Democracy Network (SDN) and Facility for Oil Sector Transformation (FOSTER) in the implementation of SIWP in the ministry.”
Akpabio stated that SIWP has four key objectives, which include the provision of a coordinated framework for implementing developmental interventions in the Niger Delta region and providing a joint accountability framework for monitoring and evaluation of projects in the region.
Others are to deliver a strategic response based on a shared vision for development by stakeholders in the region and to demonstrate the federal government’s commitment to peace and development in the region.
The minister also outlined some key benefits the SIWP would give the region adding that it would bring to an end the era of project duplication and multiplication by agencies of government in the Niger Delta region.
He added: “The SIWP e-portal, a web-based monitoring system allows you to view projects being carried out in the region by both the public and private organisations. This accountability process will enable citizens to know the organisation implementing a particular project in their environs and thereby hold them responsible for delivery.
“The rationalised programming of joint work- planning and reinforced coordination of intervention would by no means eliminate wastages of resources in our efforts to develop the region.
“The SIWP e-portal currently contains over 400 projects of the Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs and the Niger Delta Development Commission, already uploaded and visible to the public.” (THISDAY)