Edo State government has made a case for increased support from the European Union (EU) in deepening its financial management and procurement processes, which will enable the state attract more investments through Foreign Direct Investments (FDIs).
Acting commissioner for finance and special adviser to the Governor on Economic Matters, Joseph Eboigbe, said this during an assessment tour by an EU delegation in the state. The tour of the EU-supported projects in the state made stops at the Government Science and Technical College (GSTC) Benin City and other Edo State Employment and Expenditure for Result (SEEFOR) project sites in the state.
Eboigbe commended the EU for supporting the state government’s developmental programmes and sued for more support in the area of Public Financial Management (PFM) and procurement practice to improve financial accountability, transparency, and attract investors.
He noted that through the agency’s intervention programmes, “youths in the state have been engaged in public works, which have reduced restiveness and made them to be productive, adding that more access roads have been constructed to boost social and economic activities while the school for Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) has been revamped.”
He explained, “SEEFOR’s Community Driven Development (CDD) has brought development to rural communities, as the state government is complementing the initiative by setting up the Edo State Primary Health Care Development Agency to address challenges in the health sector.”
He added that SEEFOR had supported the reforms of the State Financial System with contributions to strengthening the state’s Internal Revenue Services, which has led to significant increase in Internally Generated Revenue (IGR).
Responding, the EU representative, Durero Roberto, thanked the state government for the progress recorded, urging the state to collaborate with Lagos-based European Business Organisation (EBO) to improve relations with the EU.
The EU team visited the Benin Technical College in Benin City where the state government is carrying out renovation work as well as Edo SEEFOR/FADAMA intervention projects.