Dara Akala, executive director PIND FoundationFoundation for Partnership Initiatives in the Niger Delta (PIND) and other development partners, have disclosed plans for the seventh Niger Delta Development Forum (NDDF) 2018.
PIND Knowledge and Communications Manager, Chichi Nnoham-Onyejekwe disclosed this in a statement.
According to the body, the 2018 NDDF will convene two roundtables in Benin City, Edo State, and Port Harcourt, Rivers State on November 27 and 29.
The theme of the forum is: “Delivering Results: Executing a State-Led Plan.”
The forum would be hosted in collaboration with the Market Development in the Niger Delta, European Union’s Niger Delta Support Programme and other partners.
Nnoham-Onyejekwe said this year’s forum would feature a regional State Pitch Competition, where Niger Delta states have been invited to identify and present proposal for long-term planning.
Two states with the best plans will be supported with technical and financial assistance from the development partners to make the long-term plans a reality.
Additionally, this year’s NDDF, which follows up from the recommendations of the 2017 forum, will convene roundtables during which challenges, innovations, cross-sector opportunities, and lessons will be reflected upon.
This is to discover the unique means that states should take to facilitate planning.
The recommendations of the 2017 forum had called for a bottom-up approach to regional development and governance, alongside a strong emphasis on state governments to develop framework for strategic planning for development, competitiveness, and inclusive growth.
The manager also quoted the Executive Director of PIND, Dr. Dara Akala, as saying that the NDDF 2018 will give Niger Delta states the opportunity for peer-to-peer learning and experience sharing activities between government and other stakeholders.
This is with a view to facilitating the implementation of state-led development roadmaps in the region.
“States will get the opportunity to share their vision for their state-led planning processes and get feedback and support to help these local actors to make informed decisions on the policy strategies, structures, and actions to apply in their areas of planning,” the statement said.
PIND disclosed that the expected output from this year’s event includes a planning policy database, planning audits, and state road maps.
The statement further explained that there would be a review of each state’s development plans and their current planning and monitoring and evaluation approaches.