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FCTA Pledges Support for ACReSAL Project’s Success

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Favour Ishember, Abuja

The Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) has reaffirmed its commitment to the successful development of the Agro-climatic Resilience in Semi-Arid Landscapes (ACReSAL) project in Abuja.

The Minister made this commitment when the leader of the World Bank Task Team, Dr. Joy Iganya Agene, paid her a courtesy visit in her office.

Mahmoud, said that the ACReSAL project holds special significance to the FCT Administration as it aligns with the ongoing commitment to addressing the significant environmental challenges that have emerged due to extensive developmental activities alongside a rapidly growing population.

She also noted that the project was not only a privilege but a powerful reflection of the enduring relationship that exists between the World Bank and the FCT Administration, adding that both are working together to foster environmental sustainability and agricultural prosperity for the FCT populace.

The Minister said, “I am particularly delighted by the substantial progress that has already been achieved through the ACReSAL project which the bank is supporting, not just in the FCT but the 19 Northern states that are participating in the project.

“It is well-known that over the past 48 years as Nigeria’s capital city, the city has experienced a concerning loss of its tree covers and land degradation.

“This is a testament of the strong reputation that the World Bank has built over the years of its existence through intervention projects, even in the remotest areas, with remarkable achievements”.

Mahmoud, however, commended the World Bank for this innovative programme, as well as the Federal Project Monitoring Unit (FPMU) for their invaluable expertise, experience, and steadfast commitment that have played a critical role in guiding the Project Implementation Unit (PIU) of FCT ACReSAL towards success.

According to her, “It is in this regard that the Administration wholeheartedly identifies with the ACReSAL project to pave the way for a greener and more sustainable future for residents of the FCT”.

Earlier in her remarks, the Task Team Lead of World Bank ACReSAL project, Dr. Joy Iganya Agene, revealed that the bank has disbursed about 2 million dollars to the FCT, as she expressed confidence that the project would fly in the FCT.

She also added that the money was disbursed because the FCT qualified as part of the tier one state.

According to her, “And the expectation from tier one state is to immediately prepare for studies and investment, so that they can really access investment.

“And since the project became effective, FCT has been one of the states that have been moving so fast, and we know that is because of the leadership that we have here in the FCTA and also the capacity of the Project Implementation Unit (PIU).

“Upon assesment of what has happened the FPMU, and the FCT, one of the flagship thing is the commission of CIG (Community Interest Groups).

“Beyond that, we have some investment in gully erosion and flood control, large afforestation at the FCT and we will need your support to this”.

She added that the visit was also to inform the minister of the expectations to access more funding amount to about 10 million dollars.

While welcoming the delegation, the Mandate Secretary Agriculture and Rural Development Secretariat, Hon. Lawan Kolo Geidam, said that the visit was an integral aspect of the project’s strategy to strengthen institutional collaboration to enhance seamless implementation of the project.

He also stated that since the commencement of the project in the FCT, the Administration has diligently established robust frameworks to ensure the success of the project.

“Moreover, in keeping with the core objective of the project, which emphasizes a community-driven approach, we have been actively engaging with all six Area Councils in the FCT.

“The establishment of Local Government Implementation Committees (LGIC), Site Implementation Committees (SICs), and the ongoing registration of Community Interest Groups (CIGs) reflect our dedication to involving local participants at every stage.

“It is important to recognize that the outcomes of ACReSAL’S interventions will become increasingly visible particularly in better land and watershed utilization techniques,” he stressed.

Geidam added that the visit by the World Bank delegation provides an excellent opportunity to showcase the advancements made and to explore strategies for scaling up these initiatives towards a sustainable and prosperous future for FCT populace.

The National Project Co-coordinator of ACReSAL Project, Mr. Abdulhamid Umar, commended the giant stride recorded by the FCT as one of the tier one states.

The visit showcased the project’s advancements and explored strategies for scaling up initiatives towards a sustainable and prosperous future for the FCT populace.

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