Kwara state government on Wednesday held another town hall meeting to unveil the final draft of the Ilorin Masterplan, with Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq calling it another opportunity to harvest more views and ideas for an all-inclusive document.
Attended by various relevant stakeholders, traditional chiefs from Ilorin Emirate, and government officials and technocrats, the gathering, which was second in series, afforded the participants the opportunity to understand the in-depth benefits the physical development plan would offer when implemented.
AbdulRazaq said the new Masterplan speaks to the government’s genuine concern for planned growth and future of the children, adding that a similar gesture is underway for other major cities in the state.
“Today represents another milestone in the history of Ilorin and our state. For one, the capital city is getting a master plan for the second time since the creation of Kwara State in 1967,” he said.
“The first one had been designed in 1976 and it was meant to lapse at the close of the 20th century. We are glad to be offering the state its second-ever master plan. This speaks to our genuine concern for planned growth and the future of our children. It is a testament to the great vision and commitment we have for this state. I want to state that designing master plans for other major cities is also a top priority as we build a sustainable future for Kwara State.”
Represented by deputy Governor Kayode Alabi, the Governor said the project started in 2020, and has taken the efforts of many professionals and patriots to get the process this far, thanking every individual for their rich contributions.
He noted that the role of a master plan in sustainable development cannot be overemphasized, saying 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 huge growth into the future. This master plan therefore provides A-grade professional insights into how the city will be organized in the areas of transportation and utilities, waste management, water and drainage system, education, health, climate change management and green areas, job opportunities, agriculture, and future expansion of the city, among others,” he added.
“While this master plan has enjoyed serious inputs 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 in how to organize our capital city and make it the best planned and the most resilient in the country.”
Some of the participants included the State Head of Service Mrs. Suzan Modupe Oluwole; Special Adviser on Strategy Saad Salau; his counterparts on Political Communication, and Women Empowerment Bashir Adigun and Bolanle Ismail (Iya Lamule); Chairman Ilorin Masterplan Working Committee AbdulMutalib Shittu; and Chairman State Arabic Education Board, Prof. 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 called again to gather more inputs of the stakeholders, most especially Ilorin residents with a view to ensuring a collective participation in the development plan.
He hinted that the masterplan also takes care of strategies for implementation that will assist both the present and subsequent administrations with a view to improving standard of living.
He lauded the vision of the present administration in the state for coming up with the plan, noting it takes a determined and progressive government to go into that.
Project Manager for Dar Group, Richard Walker, said his company has been working hard to research and develop findings, which he said, were accommodated to further guide them on the assignment.
He said the ongoing process has an overwhelming advantage that cuts across improving the people’s standard of living, promoting beauty of their environment with at least five (5) new satellite towns to spring up.
Some of the participants and physical planning experts who spoke at the occasion said the project is a welcome development, asking various individuals and groups to key into it.