DFID’s Nigeria Infrastructure Advisory Facility wins Development Project of the Year Award
A major DFID project to assist the Government of Nigeria to better plan, finance and operate infrastructure has won the prestigious British Expertise Development Project of the Year award.
The Award was presented by HRH the Duke of Gloucester in recognition of the outstanding success of the Nigeria Infrastructure Advisory Facility (NIAF) in providing increased access to improved, reliable and affordable infrastructure services in Nigeria.
Commenting on the award Stephen O’Brien MP, the British Government’s Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for International Development, noted:
“I was in Nigeria last week, and as I saw for myself - sometimes in the dark - power cuts are a huge obstacle to business, to creating jobs and raising incomes. Higher economic growth will contribute to lifting over 100 million people out of extreme poverty in Nigeria. I was very pleased to see that the government is making progress, and that the UK is able to help. Power has gone up by 85%, although from a very low level, and 90% of people surveyed said they had noticed an improvement. This award is recognition of the role played by our programme, implemented by Adam Smith International.”
Commenting in response to the award, His Excellency, Goodluck Jonathan, The President of Nigeria noted:
“NIAF’s assistance has been key in helping the Presidential Task Force on Power drive forward the power reform programme.”
Key NIAF achievements include:
- Helping the President establish the Presidential Task Force on Power and developing the Presidential power sector reform Road Map which is now being implemented with NIAF support. Once completed the annual benefit in GDP will be around US$130bn per annum.
- Developing the Federal Government’s public-private partnership (PPP) policy, establishing Nigeria’s first ever Federal PPP unit and helping it become operational - the Federal PPP unit has just been voted PPP Champion of the Year by Africa Investor Magazine.
- Developing the first ever Lagos Mass Transport Master-plan, Creating a multi-modal transport system that integrates bus, rail and waterways projects to facilitate the movement of people.
- Supporting the development of PPP units across Nigeria, including support to Lagos State Government in setting up and implementing a PPP unit and policy.
- Developing the first urban transport policy for the Federal Capital Territory (Abuja)
The project is an innovative freestanding advisory facility which delivers high quality responsive and timely technical assistance, ensuring that the Government of Nigeria is provided with expert support to address issues, bottlenecks and challenges.
Matt Uzzell, NIAF’s Programme Manager noted that: “What is innovative about the NIAF approach is that it delivers rapid response technical asssitance in response to client demand but in line with an annual business plan, and critically targets technical assistance to those areas that can achieve the highest impact and deliver the maximum benefit for Nigeria.”
Keith Hammond, DFID Nigeria Senior Infrastructure Advisor noted that: “the NIAF approach is based on the belief that it is not just the quantity of support that matters but critically its quality, responsiveness and efficacy. NIAF is highly regarded from a grass roots level to the very highest levels of Nigerian Government”.
The programme is rightly regarded as one of DFID Nigeria’s success stories and a model for how innovative, effective and successful development projects should be designed, managed and implemented.
On behalf of the Nigerian Government, Mansur Ahmed, Director General of the Federal PPP unit, said: “We consider this award to be very well deserved. NIAF’s professional but practical approach to delivering technical assistance has proved to be extremely effective. We believe that DFID’s NIAF project is one donor assistance programme that has truly succeeded in delivering significant value and making direct impact on the development of our country’s economic reform effort.”