December 3, 2022

The Nigerian Society of Engineers has invited 18 presidential candidates to engage them in infrastructural development in Nigeria ahead of the 2023 general elections.

A letter of invitation addressed to the invited 18 National Chairmen of the presidential candidates explains that the engagement will give all the political parties an avenue to explain their plans for the development of infrastructure in Nigeria.

The letter further added that the event, titled “Roadmap/Agenda for Infrastructure Development in Nigeria” would take place at The International Conference Centre (ICC), Abuja on Wednesday, November 16, 2022.

The letter reads: “I bring profound greetings from the Council and entire members of the Nigerian Society of Engineers (NSE), the umbrella organisation for all engineers in Nigeria.

“The Nigerian Society of Engineers looks after the professional needs of members and the nation at large through well-structured programmes and regular interactions to promote and enhance high professional standards, ethical practices and general well-being.

“There is a recorded consensus that inadequate infrastructure is one of the major constraints to sustainable economic growth and development in Nigeria.

Consequently, Nigeria’s various development plans such as National Vision 20:2020 (NV 20:2020), the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP) 2017-2020, and the Nigeria National Development Plan (NDP) 2021-2025 consistently point to weak infrastructure as one of the factors that have seriously undermined the country’s economic performance over the years.

“The Nigerian Society of Engineers recognises the significance of infrastructural development as a panacea to national growth and has undertaken the task to report on the state of the nation’s infrastructure.

“From its maiden edition in 2015, the Nigerian Infrastructure Report Card (NIRC), now in its third edition (NSE 2021 NIRC), is a biennial publication that provides the basis for measuring and tracking growth in infrastructural development as measured primarily from the infrastructure user’s perspective with supporting data from relevant government Ministries. Departments, and Agencies (MDAs).

“Within the years building up to NSE 2021 NIRC, government has brought in significant innovative ideas to solve the infrastructure funding gap, which experts have recognized to be up to an estimated USD 46 Billion annually in critical infrastructure areas.“Such funding initiatives include the tax incentive, SUKUK bonds and other Public Private Partnership (PPP) initiatives. However, the real question may be how much these initiatives and funding injections have impacted infrastructure provisioning to the extent where users can give more positive ratings.“However, despite some noticeable effort and progress made over the last few years- including allocation of at least 30 percent to capital projects in the Federal Annual Budgets since 2016- the government still acknowledged that substantial infrastructural deficit remains across the country.

“In furtherance to the above Sir, I am honoured to extend our cordial invitation to your party’s Presidential Candidate to a robust engagement, alongside the 17 other parties’ Presidential Candidates, on your party’s Roadmap/Agenda for Infrastructure Development in Nigeria which has the following threshold details…”The statement notified the candidates of a questions and answers session with the presidential candidates.

The political parties and presidential candidates who were invited include Accord, Prof. Christopher Irene Imumolen; Action Alliance (AA), Major Hamza Al-Mustapha, Rtd; African Action Congress (AAC), Mr. Omoleye Stephen Sowore; African Democratic Congress (ADC), Dumebi Kachikwu; Action Democratic Party (ADP), Engr. Yabagi Yusuf Sani; and the All Progressives Congress (APC), Asiwaju Ahmed Bola Tinubu.

Others are All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), Prof. Peter Nnanna Chukwudi Umeadi; Allied Peoples Movement (APM), Princess Chichi Ojei; Action Peoples Party (APP), Charles Osita Nnadi; Boot Party (BP), Mr. Sunday Oluwafemi Adenuga; Labour Party (LP), Mr. Peter Gregory Obi; New Nigeria People’s Party (NNPP), Dr. Rabiu Musa Mohammed Kwankwaso; National Rescue Movement (NRM), Amb. Felix Johnson Osakwe; Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Alhaji Atiku Abubakar; Peoples Redemption Party (PRP), Mr. Kolawole Latifu Abiola; Social Democratic Party (SDP), Prince Adewole Ebenezer Adebayo; Young Progressives Party (YPP), Prince Abdulmalik Ado-Ibrahim; and Zenith Labour Party (ZLP), Chief Daniel Daberechukwu Nwanyanwu.

“Your Excellency, your Candidate is also humbly invited to respond to questions on ‘Roadmap/Agenda for Infrastructure Development in Nigeria’, during the Parley which takes place 9:00AM to 1:00PM.

“Please note that your Presidential Candidate is entitled to be accompanied with not more than 10 party officials/members, whose identities we would love to have not later than 3 days to the engagement,” the letter added.

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