BENIN -The Governor of Edo State, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, has charged development actors within the South-South Cooperation (SSC) framework to strengthen the existing team spirit among member states in the pursuit of market-led, knowledge-based economies that will engender sustainable development.
The governor said this in a statement to mark the United Nations Day for South-South Cooperation, observed every September 12.
The SSC is an alliance of countries in the Global South – countries lying South of the Equator — for the promotion of trade and development models in the political, economic, social, cultural, environmental and technical domains.
Noting that while the modest achievements of the body are laudable, Obaseki stressed that “there is an increasing need to reinvigorate the team spirit among member states in the face of the common developmental challenges we all face – political, economic, social, environmental – in the bid to improve our human development index as countries of the global south.”
He urged leaders of third world countries “to be more enthusiastic about fast-tracking efforts at joining the club of developed countries through peer review of developmental efforts, transparency and accountability, technical and other partnerships.”
Such partnership according to the governor, “is crucial as cooperation among developing countries and agencies in the Global South ensures that players share and build on experiences in healthcare, agriculture, education, urbanisation, security and scientific and technological innovations.”
This conviction he said, “informed our visits to the Indonesian Oil Palm Research Institute in Medan, recently, to secure a partnership deal for the development of the oil palm sector in Edo State, in our resolve to make Edo State the oil palm capital of the country. “
Similarly, the Edo State government paid a visit to Singapore to woo foreign investors and partners to bolster the state’s industrialisation drive in agricultural sector, trade and investment, technology, construction as well as key players in the environmental sector.
Over ten actors in the organised private sector of Singapore as well as state-owned enterprises, met with the Edo State delegation.
“We believe that their experiences are not so different from ours, as they have grown to where they are today, by tackling the same issues we now face in Nigeria, such as unemployment, rural-urban migration, and economic integration,” Obaseki said.
The South-South Co-operation has grown to become a rallying point for developing countries, providing the platform for sharing developmental ideas.