By JACOB ONJEWU DICKSON
A professor of urban planning at Ahmadu Bello University Professor Adamu Ahmed has observed that the candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the forthcoming governorship election in Kaduna State, Senator Uba Sani and the New Nigeria People’s Party (NNPP) in Kano State, Abba Kabiru, provides greater vision for economic development, industrialisation and physical development needed to improve economic competitiveness of the two states with spill-over to the Northern economy.
In an interview on the significance of governorship elections in Kaduna and Kano States for the North, Professor Ahmed a former Bauchi State Commissioner of Lands and Survey noted that the governance challenges of hosting two of the top six most expansive cities in Nigeria and the major economic hubs of the North is bound to benefit from grounded polices that both candidates present.
He referred to a World Bank report on Nigeria, that institutional reforms and strategic investment in infrastructure are essential to economic growth and poverty reduction, and that cities will replace Oil as strategic drivers of economic growth for Nigeria in the not too distant future that States need to be adequately prepared for.
He further noted that the 60% contribution of Lagos to Nigeria’s non-oil GDP means there is a lot to play for by both Kaduna and Kano States in providing the enabling environment to attract Foreign Direct and Local Investments essential to improving economic competitiveness.
Recent reports have shown that institutional reforms and strategic investment in infrastructure implemented in Kaduna State has erased nearly 20 years of infrastructure deficit similar to what Kano State achieved in 2015.
Kaduna State was also first in Ease of Doing Business in the Country in 2018 and has attracted over USD 4 billion since 2015.