The 3rd Federal Government and Progressives Governor’s forum Parley on policy synergy held in Jos ,the plateau State Capital with the theme “strengthening public delivery service” with strategies on Security,Revenue, Universal Basic Education and health. President Muhammadu Buhari was represented by SGS Boss Mustapha who urged the Governor’s under the forum to be people oriented and support the fight against corruption in their various states. Chairman of the Governor’s forum and Governor of Ekiti led other Govenors of the APC under the leadership of Governor Abubakar Atiku Bakudu, Chairman of Northern Governor’s Forum,Rt Hon.Barr Simon Bako Lalong,Governor Nasir Elrufai and the Governors of Edo,Nassarawa,Niger were all in attendance as the deputies of Kogi,gombr and Jigawa represented their Governor’s. The National Chairman of the APC Comrade Adams Oshiomhole led the National working committee of the APC at the parley. Governor Simon Bako Lalong the host Governor Charged his colleagues to be committed in their vision of providing accountable,responsible and responsive leadership to the citizens.
Full text of Governor Simon Bako Lalong;
ADDRESS OF THE GOVERNOR OF PLATEAU STATE, HIS EXCELLENCY RT. HON. (DR) SIMON BAKO LALONG & CO-CHAIRMAN, GOVERNANCE PROGRAMME STEERING COMMITTEE, AT THE THIRD FEDERAL GOVERNMENT – PROGRESSIVE GOVERNORS FORUM PARLEY ON POLICY SYNERGY HELD ON MONDAY, NOVEMBER 25, 2019, AT THE BANQUET HALL, NEW GOVERNMENT HOUSE, LITTLE RAYFIELD JOS, PLATEAU STATE.
1. It is with great pleasure that I warmly welcome you on behalf of the Government and good people of Plateau State to the third Federal Government – Progressive Governors Forum Parley on Policy Synergy holding here in our beautiful Capital City of Jos.
2. Indeed, it is a great honour for us to host this very crucial engagement organised by the Progressive Governors Forum whose focus is to strengthen public service delivery in APC States and the nation at large.
3. Given our antecedents in hosting high calibre events such as this, and our rich hospitality in addition to the serene and enchanting beauty of Plateau State, there is no better choice than Jos, to host this very important gathering at this time of the year.
4. You may wish to recall Your Excellencies, that the last parley took place in Kebbi State on August 1, 2017 with the theme “Policy Synergy to Ensure Development” which focused on Finance, Internally Generated Revenue (IGR), Agriculture, Education and Social Investment.
5. Your Excellencies, as Governors under the banner of the All Progressives Congress (APC), we are fully committed to our vision of providing accountable, responsible and responsive leadership to our citizens.
6. This is in line with the promises we made while seeking votes from the electorates and the oath of office that we took to serve our people.
7. We are also not unaware of the torrents of expectations from the people we were elected to serve despite the financial challenges confronting our States.
8. The onus is therefore on us, to justify why we were chosen from among millions of Nigerians by devising ingenious ways of meeting the expectations of the public.
9. This underscores the relevance of our meeting here today as we synergize to explore what we can do together, what we can share with each other and areas we can collaborate with one another particularly the Federal Government that has partnered with us all the way.
10. Saddled with the enormous responsibility of moving our dear states forward, we have no option but to constantly engage one another like we are doing here today. Like the proverb says “If you want to go fast, go alone. But if you want to go far, go together.”
11. We must also put on record that notwithstanding the many challenges we face as a country, the APC administration both at the National, State and Local Government levels have recorded tremendous progress in reshaping the economy, rebuilding infrastructure, creating jobs and improving security among others.
12. But we must also admit that there is still more work to be done considering the level of decay we inherited in our various States. That is why we have to commend Mr. President for leading the way in the determination to deliver Change and take Nigeria to the Next Level.
13. The fact that we are paying special attention to three key areas of Internal Security and humanitarian Services, Health and Education at this parley makes me particularly happy because these areas reflect some of the most challenging issues we are contending with in our respective States and the nation at large.
14. We therefore need to come up with practical and effective ways on how we can tackle insecurity manifesting in insurgency, banditry, kidnapping, farmer-herder clashes, ethno-religious crises and other violent conflicts.
15. We must at this meeting resolve how best to work with the Federal Government and indeed the Local Government system to ensure the protection of lives and property of our citizens.
16. This parley should also enable us to discuss what we are doing in our States about Primary Health Care, Health Insurance, Social Protection for the vulnerable and ensuring that there is quality and compulsory education for our citizens.
17. It is also expected that this parley should provide more insights on how we have fared so far in our synergy with the Federal Government through the Universal Basic Education, National Social Investment Programme, Humanitarian Crises Management, and the National Primary Healthcare Strategy among other programmes that the APC-led Federal Government has rolled out.
18. We cannot talk about Strengthening Public service Delivery without discussing the issues of accountability and prudent deployment of resources. This is where we need to learn from each other on how to generate more funds and judiciously deploy them devoid of corruption, mismanagement and extravagance.
19. Manpower development and human resource re-invigoration that is driven by information and communication technologies is very important if we are to make any progress in governance. We need to dwell on this and also forge the way forward.
20. This may also lead us to taking another look at Local Government system to make it more effective. We all must work together to instill fiscal discipline and transparency in the management of the resources that are so directly allocated to that tier of government.
21. For us in Plateau State, there has been growing synergy among all stakeholders including the three arms of government as we continue our Rescue Mission through the 3-point policy thrust of peace, security and good governance; infrastructural development; and sustainable economic rebirth.
22. We have since come up with a 5- Year Strategic Development Plan which is guiding our Next Level Vision where we are prioritizing various projects in education, health, agriculture, mining and tourism which we believe can turn around the economic fortunes of our State if properly harnessed.
23. We have set in motion plans to host an Economic and Investment Summit where we intend to open up Plateau State to domestic and foreign investors and rebranding our State to what it truly is –THE HOME OF PEACE AND TOURISM. I will shortly be calling on your Excellencies to join us.
24. This parley is therefore apt as it affords us the opportunity of discussing some of our efforts through agencies such as the Plateau Primary Healthcare Development Agency, Plateau Health Insurance Scheme, Plateau Disability Rights Commission, Plateau Peace Building Agency, ICT Development Agency as well as Plateau Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency.
25. Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen, that you are all here for this parley is another endorsement of the efforts we have put in to restore peace to Plateau State which has seen many people coming back and new ones coming in to the nation’s preferred destination.
26. I therefore want to thank specially Mr. President for again supporting us to do what we have done so far even as we remain committed to taking things to the next level. We are grateful sir.
27. Let me use this opportunity to specially congratulate our re-elected colleague His Excellency Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi State and our 20th Member, Governor-Elect Chief David Lyon who made history as the first APC elected Governor of Bayelsa State during the November 16th Governorship elections.
28. Finally, as we settle down to the business of the day, I hope we will engage in open and frank discussions that will add value to governance in our various States and the nation at large. I also commend the PGF Secretariat team for the good work they are doing.
29. Thank you for your attention and God bless you all. Rt. Hon. (Dr.) Simon Bako Lalong Executive Governor, Plateau State & Chairman, Northern Governors Forum. 25th November 2019.