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Prioritize infrastructure devt. in rural areas to decongest cities, Don urges govt.

A Real Estate Expert, Prof. Tajudeen Aluko, has urged governments at all levels to prioritize infrastructure development in rural areas as a means of discouraging rural-urban migration.

Aluko, of Department of Real Estate Management, Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU), Ile-Ife, stated this on Friday in Ibadan.

Advocate.ng gathered that the don spoke at a three-day training for 351 councilors and 33 clerks of the legislative councils in all the 33 local government areas of Oyo State.

The training, which centered on legislative roles and functions in local government administration, was organized by the Office of the Special Adviser to the Governor on Legislative Matters, in conjunction with the Ministry of Local Government and Chieftaincy Matters.

Speaking on the topic: “Rural Infrastructure, Food Security and Rural Development in Nigeria,” Aluko noted that the concentration of infrastructure development in urban areas was not the best, stressing that rural areas also deserved to be developed.

He asserted that more infrastructure development in rural areas and less in cities would encourage people to dwell there, while the menace of rural-urban migration would reduce drastically.

The don, who identified a nexus between rural infrastructure and rural development, said that without developing rural areas, the cities would be over-populated and facilities overstretched.

“That is why most of the cities in Nigeria are gasping for breath. So we have to develop our rural areas to be able to stem rural-urban migration.

“In an attempt to develop rural areas, there is the need for rural infrastructure, especially in terms of organizational and physical facilities,” he said.

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He urged the chairmen and councilors, who were elected government representatives closest to rural dwellers, to execute programmes and policies that would enhance the development of rural areas.

Advocate.ng reports that Dr. Salami Kabiru of Sociology Department, University of Ibadan, also delivered a paper on “Teamwork as a Catalyst for Good Governance.”

Also, Dr. Anuodo Oludare of the Department of Demography and Social Statistics, OAU, presented a paper with the theme: “Measuring and Evaluating Performance in Local Administration.”

Special Adviser to Gov. Seyi Makinde on Legislative Matters, Mr. Adejumobi Ademola, said that the training had prepared grounds for the participants on the tasks ahead of them in their respective council areas.

He urged the participants to apply all that they had learned in the course of the training to their day-to-day legislative duties in their respective local government areas.

Ademola also commended the governor for making the training possible, while assuring residents of the 33 local government areas that development projects would be replicated in their areas.

Three of the participants, Wale Adelodun from Ibadan South-West; Olajumoke Olajide from Ibadan North-East, and Simeon Ibitoye from Surulere, said that the training had enhanced their intellectual, political, and legislative understanding.

They promised to maximize the knowledge gained at the training. (NAN)

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