The Nigerian Institute of Town Planners (NITP) has appealed to Ondo State government to domesticate the Urban and Regional Planning Act, 2004 for effective development of the state, as well as avert social disaster.
The National President of NITP, Mr. Olutoyin Ayinde, who made the appeal at a press conference in Akure, stressed that physical planning would necessitate development that cuts across all strata.
Ayinde lamented that it was worrisome that only three states in the country had embraced the law. “Lagos and Ogun have domesticated it, while Oyo State is trying to do so,” he said.
According to him: “When I took office as national president, I said it was fitting to assess the state of physical planning in Nigeria, because I realised that physical planning had not occupied its place and this is the 10th state I would be visiting.
“Physical planning is the bedrock of development. The Nigerian Urban and Regional Planning Law 1992, which became an act in 2004 was enacted. The law prescribes that plans should be prepared from national, state down to local council level.
“To make it possible, it is required that this law be domesticated at the state level. The truth is that Ondo State is yet to domesticate the law.”
He implored Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu to intervene and show adequate commitment by ensuring full implementation of the law.
“We make this appeal in all sense of responsibility, because true town planning is the answer to good governance,” he said.
“Development without plan leads to chaos. The government should show political will, provide adequate funding and procure requisite tools for constant monitoring for efficiency and effectiveness.
“We understand that the governor is investing massively in road infrastructure. However, this investment has to be within the framework of Physical Development Plans prepared by qualified town planning professionals, so that they would not be efforts in futility.
He enjoined the state government to make use of human resources in the state for its development, as the resources to plan the state already reside in it.
“There is no need to call for foreign help or partners to build the state. What is left for the state is to harness existing resources and put square pen in square hole, so that we can get excellent results. The government should also provide logistics and requisite requirements. It is not enough to plan without implementing it.”
He promised that the institute would be available to play any role that would lead to development in Nigeria, particularly in the state within short notice.
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