Demographic imbalance, governance, social economic status, limited resources, data gaps, inequalities and discrimination have been identified as major impediments for the achievement of sustainable urban development in Nigeria.
These are the highlight of submission made by experts at the opening ceremony of the 3 – day maiden edition of the National Conference organized by the School of Environmental Technology, Kogi State Polytechnic, Lokoja held on Tuesday 26th April, 2022 at the Hall ‘A’ of the Main Campus.
The lead paper presenter TPL. Dr. Adams Ndalai Baba who is also the Head of Department, Urban and Regional Planning at Federal Polytechnic, Idah emphasized possible approaches to be adopted while seeking solutions such as; access to land, credit and low-cost building materials by homeless poor and unemployed, upgrading of slums to ease the deficit in urban shelter, access to basic service of clean water, sanitation, and waste collection, improved rural living conditions to land-use planning as part of solution to the myriad of problems hindering urban renewal and development.
On his part, TPL. Sani Daniel who gave the Keynote Lecture on behalf of the Director General, Kogi State Bureau of Lands and Urban Development, Honorable Nazir Yusuf Ochi opined that demand for infrastructure, basic services and housing in expanding urban centers was on the increase which had necessitated a strong urban bias in the development of programmes with little or no coordinated efforts at rural development with consequent inadequate access to market for goods and services, and deplorable condition of the education, health, transportation, water and sanitation sectors.
TPL Daniel however noted that for urban development to be sustainable, there is the need for urban development reforms, adequate shelter for all, moves to reduce poverty and economic development, environmental sustainability, good governance and international cooperation for development.
The Rector of the Polytechnic, Dr. Salisu Ogbo Usman applauded the Dean and staff of the School of Environmental Technology for the noble initiative to have gathered experts and stakeholders for the purpose of brainstorming on sustainable economic, environmental and social development in urban setting.
Dr. Usman who is also the chief host of the Conference encouraged Schools, Departments and Staff in the Polytechnic to always engage in healthy academic competition to proffer solution to societal and human problem typical of the theme of the Conference. The Rector added that the infrastructural development on the campuses was as a result of visible support, commitment and involvement of staff as internal experts and adherence to guidelines of relevant authorities to meet the growing needs of the institution.
Dean, School of Environmental Technology, Architect Dr. Ekele Thompson Ochedi said urbanization provided vital opportunities for economic development in industrialization, export markets and social – human development which formed the main objective of the conference. He called on the academics and stakeholders to brainstorm and cross-fertilize ideas and knowledge in Sciences and Technology towards promoting sustainable urban development in the country.
Architect Dr. Ochedi thanked the Management of the Polytechnic led by the Rector, the Local Organizing Committee, Staff and Students of the School for their immense support for the realization to organizing the maiden conference and promised that the success would be sustained.
There were goodwill messages from the Kogi State Honourable Commissioner for Education, Science and Technology who was represented by Dr. Animuku, and the Representative of Maigari of Lokoja, Mallam Abubakar Ibrahim.
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Logo State Polytechnic, Lokoja.