UN commends Nigeria for MDGs implementation •Peter Obi declared MDGs Nigerian champion

Posted by News Express | 27 September 2014 | 3,454 times

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The United Nations has commended Nigeria for her seriousness in the implementation of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).

Speaking at one of the side events to the 69th Session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York, USA, Director of UN Millennium Campaign, Carinne Wood, commended the Senior Special Assistant to President Goodluck Jonathan on MDGs (SSAP-MDGs), Dr. Precious Gbeneol, for her commitment to the project.

Ms Wood, who spoke on the theme ‘Localising the Post-2015 Development Agenda: Lessons from Inter-Governmental Partnership in the Implementation of the MDGs’, also commended Ms Amina Mohammed, former SSAP-MDGs, who is now the Special Advisor to the UN Secretary General on Post-2015 Development Agenda, for laying the foundation for effective implementation of the MDGs by Nigeria.

Relying on various reports about Nigeria’s MDGs track record, Ms Wood equally commended the Mr. Peter Obi, for his innovative vision of mainstreaming the MDGs into governance in Anambra State during his tenure as governor from 2006 to March 17 this year.

Speaking at the event, Dr. Gbeneol said that whatever achievements Nigeria recorded were due to the resolve of President Jonathan to change the face of governance in Nigeria by concentrating on things that would hasten the development of the country. She expressed her gratitude to Dr. Jonathan for his deploying the resources that made the effective implementation of the MDGs programme possible.

Mr. Peter Obi, who was invited to speak at the event in recognition of the remarkable performance of Anambra State in the MDGs programme in Nigeria, shared his experience on how he was able to marry the policies of his government to MDG goals.

Obi said: “On coming into office, we adopted the MDGs as our vision as a state and formulated a multi-sectoral approach for delivery of all the MDGs goals simultaneously. Although road construction was not part of the MDGs strictly speaking, roads are necessary for the delivery of the MDGs, starting with goal one-poverty alleviation.  We constructed a lot of roads to create access for rural communities.

“Recognising that we could not on our own achieve everything, we went into strategic partnership with international and local partners. A case in point was our collaboration with the Church which led to the return of their schools and government’s continued funding of those schools. This is the reason why Anambra State now comes first in external examinations. We also supported their health institutions. Using St. Joseph Hospital Adazi-Nnukwu, for example, I can tell you that it now handles heart operations.”

Obi explained that for post-MDGs agenda to be fruitful, the people must be at the centre of its planning and implementation. He said that even in the budgeting process, the people must be encouraged to be part of it.

Ms Amina Mohammed, who described Obi as the “MDGs Nigerian champion”, encouraged other governors to understudy him and replicate what he has done in their states.

John Cardinal Onaiyekan, who represented the Catholic Bishops of West Africa, thanked the UN for the continued concern for the plight of the peoples of the world. He commended Dr. Gbeneol for her work in the MDGs.

Cardinal Onaiyekan said he was a witness to Obi’s achievements in a Anambra State, and insisted it was because of his close collaboration with the Church. He urged other governments to see the Church as partners in progress and collaborate with her for the good of the society and to the glory of a God.

•Photo shows the Senior Special Assistant to the President on MDGs (SSAP-MDGs), Dr. Precious Gbeneol (middle), with the former Governor of Anambra State, Mr. Peter Obi (left),  and  the  representative of Catholic Bishops of West Africa, John Cardinal Onaiyekan (right), at the 69th Session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York.

Source: News Express

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