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Buhari: I’ll spend more on infrastructure

…inaugurates Nigerian Content Tower

President Muhammadu Buhari has said that the principles of local content and self-reliance were at the heart of the recently approved N2.3 trillion National Economic Sustainability Plan by his administration. Buhari pledged to spend more on infrastructure across the country, focusing on finishing projects delivered by local contractors and technology that create jobs for thousands of Nigerians. The President made this disclosure yesterday at the virtual inauguration of the new headquarters building of the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB) in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State. According to a statement made available to newsmen by his spokesman, Femi Adesina, the President equally used the occasion to express his delight that thousands of direct and indirect jobs were created during the execution of the project in addition to the various business opportunities. “This commissioning brings to the fore the importance of local content in all activities of our national life, especially with the prevailing COVID-19 pandemic.

“I believe strongly in local production and patronage of our goods and services as one of the surest ways to empower our citizens and give them viable opportunities to excel in their chosen professions and business endeavours. “That is why two of the Executive Orders issued under our government are related to enforcing local content in public procurement and contracts to further replicate the successes being realized in the oil and gas industry. “Local content and selfreliance are key principles of the recently approved N2.3 trillion National Economic Sustainability Plan.

The plan is aimed at the promotion of local production, local services, local innovation and the use of local materials,” he said. The President said the iconic 17-storey building, known as the Nigerian Content Tower, with the full complements of a 10MW Power Plant and 1000-seater Conference Centre, reflected his administration’s drive to provide infrastructure across the country to attract investments, create jobs and eradicate poverty. “With the commissioning of this project, I want to highlight that we have put in place a landmark of reference in the Niger Delta to reflect long lasting legacies that signpost the years of oil and gas exploitation and I assure you that there is more to come. “I am also pleased that this project has been delivered by local contractors supported by other local engineering and project consultants.

We must all be proud that we finished what we started,” he said. Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Chief Timipre Sylva, declared that the inauguration of the Tower in Yenagoa indicated Buhari’s disposition toward national develop-ment. He said that the completion of the project was one of the mandates given to the ministry under the next level agenda. Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Mele Kyari, said that some of the efforts of the President over the past five years had helped to sustain significant peace in the Niger Delta. Also, in his remarks, the Executive Secretary of NCDMB, Mr. Simbi Wabote, said that the building signified that there was hope. He said that the 17-storey building construction, which started in third quarter of 2015, had about half of what was on the surface below the ground. According to him, 76 per cent of the materials used for construction are complete Nigerian content and 95 per cent of the manpower also indigenous. He said that the building was a proof of prudent management of the one per cent revenue paid to the Nigeria Content Industry Fund by oil companies annually.

 

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