President Muhammadu Buhari says the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) deserves accolades for the assistance it renders to Nigeria in diverse ways, particularly in stabilising the North-East.
The President spoke on Thursday at State House, Abuja, while playing host to the Head of the UNDP Regional Bureau for Africa Ms Ahunna Eziakonwa.
He said; ”the Nigerian Government is doing its best to rehabilitate Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs), and return them to their ancestral homes, but with meagre resources, assistance from bodies like the UNDP comes handy.
The President said as a developing nation, Nigeria “can’t do hop, step and jump, but must pass through the process of development,” stressing that the help of international organisations are well appreciated.
He thanked Nigerian-born Ms Eziakonwa for her official visit, “and for coming home as well,” noting that herself, Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala of the World Trade Organization, and Amina Mohammed, Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations, were some of the women doing Nigeria proud internationally.
The Head of the UNDP Regional Bureau for Africa said she was delighted during her visit to the North-East, “to see incredible progress being made in helping people restore their livelihoods, teachers and students back in schools, police stations being rebuilt, and health centres being reconstructed.
Saying it is the desire of the UNDP to see IDPs camps emptied, she thanked Nigeria for the opportunity given the organisation to play a role, “as well as space given us to address COVID-19 through the Basket Fund.
On youth development, Ms Eziakonwa said; ”Africa was now being seen “from problem lens to opportunity lens,” and efforts were being made to tap into youth dynamism, provision of social protection, digital technology, the Africa Continental Free Trade Area, and focus on climate change.
UNDP deserves accolades- President Buhari