North East Development Commission (NEDC) has asked for five percent from the Value Added Tax (VAT) and the Ecological Fund to enable it to develop the region.
At present, the NEDC gets three percent from VAT and Ecological Fund but the commission said the fund is not enough to develop their area.
At a stakeholders’ meeting between the NEDC and members of the National Assembly from the region, its managing director/CEO, Mohammed Alkali, said funds are needed to build the North East based on their 10-year master plan.
He said, “We need an increment in the VAT and Ecological Fund from three percent to five per cent.” He added that, if anything happens to the VAT and the ecological funds it will affect their operations.
“So, we want the ratio to be increased from three percent to five percent to help us run the activities of the commission effectively,” Alkali said.
On how the North East will be developed within 10 years, the NEDC consultant, Dr Kasim Gidado said 18 parties were involved in developing the master plan that is ready.
He said the plan is for the development of the six states covering 112 local governments in the North East Stabilisation and Development Master Plan.
“The master plan is from 2020 to 2030. We identified 11 pillars in the master plan with five main areas,” Gidado said, adding that 80 percent of the development projects would be driven by public private partnership.
Another consultant, Dr Mohammed Ahmed, stated that the NEDC require over $ 9.6 billion based on the assessment of the world Bank and the European Union to fix the infrastructural needs of the North East geopolitical zone at the receiving end of the Boko Haram insurgency for the past 10 years.
NEDC also hinted that 18 mega schools would be constructed in the six states of the region, with each state having three such schools.
Earlier, the leader of the North East Caucus in the National Assembly, Senator Danjuma Goje, said the commission is their baby adding that after all processes, Buhari established the commission.
“This meeting is an opportunity to have a firsthand briefing on the commission’s activities because we want development of the North East, “ Goje said, before they entered the executive session.