Launch and Dissemination of Cross River State International Development Policy

The Cross River State Government on Tuesday, September 6th 2022 launched the International Development Policy by the Ministry of International Development Cooperation (MIDC) with support from CUSO International in partnership with Global Affairs Canada (GAC), MIDC being the coordinating Ministry for all International development assistance and collaboration in the state.

In her welcome address, the Commissioner, Ministry of International Development Cooperation (MIDC), Dr Inyang Asibong disclosed that the Policy framework is to address the basic realities of development support that can enable effective cooperation between Cross River and her development partners.

Asibong: “May l welcome you all to this epoch-making event in spite of your busy schedules”

The Director of Administration MIDC Mbong Atu Ausaji gave an overview of the policy. In her presentation, she gave an introductory background which covered the purpose for the development of the policy: these are basically development challenges the state is facing, the gaps and the need to close up the gaps. D.A enumerated several, but not all , benefits that the state stands to enjoy as a result of the policy including; building a strong strategic partnership with relevant development partners through a process of active engagement/dialogue with partners to explore specific areas of cooperation/collaboration for result driven implementation of programmes/projects to achieve the desired objectives, provide a course of actions and a set of principles, rules and guidelines to govern partnership between Cross River State and international development partners.

“The Cross River State International Development Policy is a home grown set of guidelines having the Paris Declaration as its guiding principles, it is designed to achieve coordination, alignments and coherence in the delivery of partnership development.

“It is also expected to address the gaps identified in development cooperation, based on the realities on ground, regarding local peculiarities, addressing short term issues, while looking forward to the long terms.

“From inception this policy has been supported by UNFPA and World Bank. It is being launched with support from CUSO International and Global Affairs Canada (GAC). It defines the extent we work with partners to align with State Development Priorities.

“His Excellency, the State Governor, Senator Prof. Ben Ayade appreciates you all for providing the needed support for partnership developments”. The MIDC Boss said.

Delivering his remarks, the State Deputy Governor, Prof Ivara Esu acknowledged the efforts of partners to the state, which according to him has had tremendous impacts since the Ministry of International Development Cooperation began interfacing to attract development.

“May l commend the efforts of all those who have worked tirelessly to develop this policy.

“Cross River had over the years enjoyed the support and collaboration of partners. This Policy will further strengthen the cooperation between Cross River and development partners.

“The state government will continue to guarantee a pliable environment for our partners to accomplish their mandates. This is the motive for upgrading from a Department of government to a full-fledged Ministry.

“Our state highly recognizes the support of development partners and pray for more cooperation and coordination”.

The launch, which held at the Conference Hall of Danic Hotels, Calabar was well attended by the Regional heads of UNICEF, WHI, UNFPA, UNOWAS and UNHCR.

The UN Resident Coordinator who is head of all Heads of UN Partners in Nigeria was accompanied by other sub-units heads of the United Nations Organs

A panel of discussion session facilitated by Mr. Abdulhamid Ibrahim and Mrs Christy Ayi was held aimed at engaging the critical stakeholders present on implementation of the policy and sustainability of the International development engagements in the state as principally coordinated by MIDC.

Other special guests in attendance were The Chief Judge of CRS – Justice Akon Ikpeme ably represented by Justice Bassey Ebuta, The Attorney General/ Commissioner for Justice- Bar. Tanko Ashang represented by Bar Mrs Florence Agbiji, Surv. Getrude Nnanjar Njar; Special Adviser Ministry of Women Affairs, Dr. Iwara Iwara; Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Health, Barr. James Ibor; Principal Counsel, Basic Rights Council Initiative, Dr. Aliyu Yakubu; Programme Specialist, Reproductive Health/UNFPA, Mr. Jerry Nwigwe;Team Lead, CUSO International, Mr. Timothy Akwaji; CRS Head of Service, Dr. Janet Ekpenyong; Director-General, CRSPHCDA, FIDA, appointees of the government, gentlemen of the Press and a host of others who witnessed the occasion.