Could you provide us with an overview of the current state of affairs in Kebbi State since the assumption of office by Governor Nasir Idris three months ago?
Certainly, Kebbi State is experiencing rapid positive changes under the leadership of Governor Nasir Idris. The state is on the verge of significant infrastructural development, with a renewed sense of hope stemming from substantial investments in infrastructure projects initiated since the governor assumed office. Governor Idris has been committed to addressing the infrastructure deficit, particularly in road networks across the state.
Before his tenure, Kebbi was characterized by a lack of urban development in the state capital, Birnin Kebbi, and major towns, a situation similar to many other states in Nigeria. However, this is changing rapidly. Kebbi is now a hub of construction activities, with contracts awarded for the construction of various roads. The governor’s commitment to transforming the state is evident in these initiatives.
Could you elaborate on the specific infrastructure developments that are taking place in Kebbi State?
Certainly, there are several noteworthy infrastructure projects underway in Kebbi State. One of the major projects is the construction of a fifteen-kilometer three-lane dual-carriage township road in Birnin Kebbi, with a total cost of N9.4 billion. This project aims to rejuvenate the state capital, enhance economic activities, and improve the movement of goods and services.
Additionally, the long-abandoned state secretariat complex contract has been re-awarded at a cost of N10 billion to reputable indigenous companies. This project will contribute to modernizing the state’s administrative infrastructure.
In the education sector, an investment of N2.4 billion has been allocated for the construction and renovation of schools in all 21 local government areas of the state. This initiative includes the construction of 86 new schools and the rehabilitation of 224 existing ones. Furthermore, 7215 sets of classroom furniture have been procured, and three computer laboratories equipped with ICT accessories are being established to enhance digital learning.
Kebbi State is also addressing water supply challenges with significant investments. The government is actively working to alleviate perennial water shortages across the state. Additionally, efforts to improve security, empower vulnerable populations, and enhance healthcare delivery are underway.
What is your perspective on past governors’ efforts to develop Kebbi State, considering the current developments?
I want to emphasize that every governor of Kebbi State has made valuable contributions to the development of the state to the best of their abilities. It would be unfair to downplay their efforts. However, governance and development dynamics require continuous progress and addressing evolving challenges.
Kebbi State, like many others, was perceived as rural and faced substantial infrastructure deficits before Governor Nasir Idris took office. His administration has brought a renewed focus on addressing these challenges and transforming the state. The governor’s vision, commitment, and proactive approach to resource allocation have catalyzed significant developments in a relatively short time.
Governor Nasir Idris assumed office with a clear agenda to improve the state’s infrastructure, among other priorities. His administration’s swift response to longstanding issues and the tangible progress made within the first three months underscore the urgency and commitment to move Kebbi State forward.
In summary, while past governors have contributed to the state’s development, Governor Nasir Idris is taking bold steps to address infrastructure deficits, enhance education, and stimulate economic growth, positioning Kebbi State for a brighter future.
Regarding the state secretariat complex, some have expressed concerns about its cost. Can you provide more details about the project?
Certainly, there have been questions about the cost of completing the state secretariat complex project. To provide clarity, it’s essential to understand the project’s history and circumstances. The state secretariat complex project was initially awarded in 2012 during the previous administration, with an initial cost of just over N3 billion. However, the project faced delays and complications, leading to a request for a cost review, which raised the estimate to about N7 billion.
When Governor Nasir Idris assumed office, he inherited the project, and its completion was a key promise during his election campaign. The original contracting company submitted a revised cost estimate of a staggering N21 billion. The state government rejected this proposal as excessive. Subsequently, the government revoked the contract and opened it for fresh bids.
Two reputable indigenous companies submitted a joint bid of N10 billion to complete the project. This decision represented a substantial reduction in costs compared to the initial contractor’s proposal. The contract was awarded to these companies, aiming to complete the project within 18 months.
In essence, the decision to re-award the project at a lower cost while ensuring its timely completion is a prudent approach to address critical infrastructure needs without incurring unnecessary expenses.
As for the challenges related to prompt payment of registration fees for WAEC and NECO, the government is aware of these concerns and is taking steps to improve the situation. Governor Nasir Idris has a deep commitment to education, having served as the national president of the Nigerian Union of Teachers in the past. While it’s still early in his tenure, the government is working on initiatives to address educational challenges and provide better support to students.
In the coming weeks, months, and years, Kebbi State will unveil its comprehensive program of action, which includes measures to enhance education and promote the welfare of students. It’s important to allow sufficient time for these initiatives to take effect and make a positive impact on the education sector in the state.