‘Our projects are visible in all nooks and crannies of North East’,
NEDC replies critic

…cautions public against antics of mischief makers

The North East Development Commission (NEDC) says the people-oriented projects it initiated and executed are visible, verifiable and functional in all the nooks and crannies of the north east region. It stated that contrary to the lies peddled by an “uninformed mischief maker and his co-travelers”, the Commission remains a paragon of transparency and prudence in public project execution.

Reacting to an article that surfaced online and credited to one Reverend Kallamu Musa Ali Dikwa which called for the immediate removal of the Managing Director of NEDC, Mr Mohammed Goni Alkali, for “corruption and embezzlement”, the Commission says the allegation leveled against its Management “was nothing but wicked desperation and parochial sentiment of the ignorant author and his paymasters aimed at smearing the reputation of the result-oriented MD and misleading the general public, for whatever ulterior motives”.

According to the Commission, it wouldn’t have been necessary to dignify Mr Kallamu and his tales of moonlight with a response but just so to keep the records straight, it is expedient to debunk the “tissues of lies and harebrained innuendoes contained in the said article”. It said the article was as shocking as it was disappointing, especially coming from a self-acclaimed reverend, noting that the embittered writer didn’t think that the good people of the North East could come out with testimonies of the impactful projects initiated, completed and inaugurated by the NEDC under the able leadership of Goni Alkali.

“We make bold to say that the accounts of NEDC are always there for anyone to investigate. The MD, Mr. Goni Alkali is certainly one of the most prudent and strict civil servants we have known not only in the North East, but the entire country”.

“To set the records straight; ever since the inception of the first board in 2019, the Goni Alkali-led team had boldly confronted the enormous humanitarian crisis in the region with the clarity of purpose and sense of responsibility. The intervention agency saw itself standing delicately at the center of the vast wilderness of the monumental devastation meted on the region by the global-class insurgency.

“The NEDC Board, with the competence and commitment of its steersman, the MD/CEO, Mohammed Goni Alkali, had to, first formulate policies, programmes and projects in collaboration with the Federal Government and Six (6) State Governments, global domestic agencies and every other relevant stakeholder to execute the task in line with its statutory mandate. The results of Alkali’s performance since 2019 have been incontrovertibly exceptional on the global scale and aimed at rebuilding entities from the rubbles of all terror and violent conflicts”.

The Commission maintains that its projects are visible in all nooks and crannies of the North East and in all areas of human needs: Houses build for resettlement of IDPs; roads and bridges in all the six states of the region; mega schools in the 18 Senatorial districts, state-of-the-art hospital interventions in all the six states; training of youths in various states in different skillsets including ICT, renewal energy, etc.

But NEDC’s intervention in region goes beyond provision of shelter, roads, basic schools; it has also revamped tertiary Institutions and healthcare service delivery in the affected area and much more. The construction of a befitting facility to serve as the Center for the Study of Violence and Extremism (CSVE) is one of the signature projects of the Commission.

Without doubt, what drives NEDC to its acclaimed excellence is the proficiency and sheer commitment of people at the helm of its affairs. Far-sightedness is the defining leadership quality of the team. NEDC’s blue print which is at the point of implementation is the building of a rail road to connect states in the region with the Nigerian south.

Projects like the introduction of electric mobility to significantly reduce cost of transportation within the region, reduce carbon emission and guarantee clean energy are some of the transformative projects which the Goni-led team are birthing. Also in the pipeline are the proposed North East Airline to cater for not only the region but the entire country, as well as specialized hospitals interventions to provide for the health needs of the people of the region.

Agricultural interventions to guarantee food security in addition to the palliative distribution of food and other non-food items across the entire region is one of the high points of Goni Alkali’s achievements in the last five years.

According to a high-profile politician in the region who pleaded anonymity, it will amount to witchcraft for anyone to accuse Mr Goni Alkali of non-performance or even corruption in view of his accomplishments and style of leadership. “Isn’t it remarkable that under Mohammed Goni Alkali, NEDC has been able to execute over 700 critical projects in about four years? How can such a man who has deployed his entire passion and mind into coordinating the expansive operations of the agency be an object of wicked and destructive criticism by faceless people?

As remarked by a resident in one of the states in the region, the spontaneous outcome of Goni Alkali’s excellent showing as MD/CEO of NEDC is the increased calls by all regions of Nigeria for similar interventionist commissions. Not a few people will agree with him.