The Kwara State Government held another public meeting on Wednesday to unveil the final draft of the Ilorin Master Plan.
By Emma Ogbuehi
Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq, described the project as another opportunity to gather more views and ideas for a comprehensive document.
Attended by various concerned stakeholders, traditional rulers from the emirate of Ilorin, government officials and technocrats, the gathering, which was the second in the series, allowed participants to understand the in-depth benefits that the physical development would offer once implemented.
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AbdulRazaq said the new master plan demonstrates the government’s genuine concern for planned growth and the future of children, adding that a similar move is in the works for other major cities in the state.
“Today marks another milestone in the history of Ilorin and our state. On the one hand, the capital is given a master plan for the second time since the establishment of Kwara State in 1967,” said he declared.
“The first was designed in 1976 and was due to expire at the end of the 20th century. We are pleased to offer the State its second master plan. This speaks to our genuine concern for the planned growth and future of our children. It is a testament to the great vision and commitment we have for this state. I would like to state that designing master plans for other major cities is also a top priority as we build a sustainable future for Kwara State. »
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Represented by the Deputy Governor, Kayode Alabi, the Governor said the project started in 2020 and mobilized the efforts of many professionals and patriots to push the process forward so far, thanking each individual for their rich contribution.
He noted that the role of a master plan in sustainable development cannot be overstated, saying that such a plan dictates the pattern of physical development in any society, with serious consequences for sustainable living.
“Ilorin which is one of the fastest growing cities in Nigeria will continue to record tremendous growth in the future. This master plan therefore provides professional level A information on how the city will be organized in the areas of transport and public services, waste management, water and drainage system, education, health, climate change management and green spaces, employment opportunities, agriculture and the future expansion of the city, among others,” he added.
“While this Master Plan has benefited from serious input from various stakeholders and experts from across Kwara State and beyond, today’s presentation of its draft, according to the Governor, offers another opportunity for everyone to have the final say on how to organize our capital and make it the best planned and most resilient in the country.
Among the participants were the Head of State Department, Mrs. Suzan Modupe Oluwole; Special Strategy Advisor Saad Salau; political communications and women’s empowerment counterparts Bashir Adigun and Bolanle Ismail (Iya Lamule); Chairman of Ilorin Abdul Mutalib Shittu Master Plan Working Committee; and the Chairman of the State Arabic Education Board, Professor Moshood Mahmud Jimba, among other dignitaries.
The Emir of Ilorin was represented by Galadimoh Geri Alhaji Umar Adelodun.
Shittu, in his remarks, explained that the meeting was convened again to garner more input from stakeholders, especially the residents of Ilorin, with a view to ensuring collective participation in the development plan.
He hinted that the master plan also supports implementation strategies that will help both current and succeeding administrations towards improving living standards.
He praised the vision of the current state administration for coming up with the plan, noting that it takes a determined and progressive government to make it happen.
Dar Group project manager Richard Walker said his company was working hard to research and develop the findings, which he said were tailored to further guide them in the mission.
He said the on-going process has an overwhelming benefit of improving people’s standard of living, promoting the beauty of their surroundings with at least five (5) new satellite towns to spring up.
Some of the attendees and physical planning experts who spoke on the occasion said the project was a welcome development, calling on various individuals and groups to take an interest in it.