The Developmental Growth And Challenges Of Taraba State Due To Lack Of A Master Development Plan

By Fidelis Nashuka

Moving forward will be difficult without clear direction and guidance. Taraba State has faced significant challenges in its developmental journey since 1999.

Despite its vast natural resources and strategic position, the state has struggled to achieve coordinated and sustainable development. 

The essence of this write-up is to examine the impact of the absence of a master development plan on the political, economic, and developmental growth of Taraba State, highlighting the consequences of lacking a strategic framework and direction for future progress, and call on Development of Master Plan for the State because, to the best of my knowledge, I am not sure if Taraba state has a Master development plan.

Political Landscape and Lack of Continuity Since the return to democratic governance in Nigeria in 1999, Taraba State has seen multiple administrations, each with its agenda. 

The absence of a master development plan has led to a lack of continuity in policies and projects. Every new administration often abandons the initiatives of its predecessor, leading to a waste of resources and uncompleted projects. 

This disjointed approach has hindered the state’s ability to establish long-term goals and strategies, affecting sectors such as education, agriculture, and healthcare.

Economic Growth and Sustainability Issues Economically, Taraba State has immense potential, particularly in agriculture and natural resources. However, without a comprehensive development plan, the state has been unable to harness these resources effectively. 

Economic projects and programs are often short-term and not sustainable, lacking the necessary research and strategic foresight. This has resulted in missed opportunities for economic diversification and growth. 

The lack of a cohesive strategy has also deterred potential investors who seek stability and clear developmental goals.
Developmental Growth Stagnation
The absence of a master development plan has significantly impacted Taraba State’s overall developmental growth.

There is no clear vision for the future of essential sectors such as education, healthcare, and infrastructure. This has led to inadequate investment in these areas, leaving many communities without access to basic amenities and services. 

The lack of a structured approach has also meant that developmental efforts are often reactive rather than proactive, addressing immediate issues without considering long-term solutions.

The Role of a Master Development Plan
A master development plan is a strategic framework that outlines the long-term vision and goals for a region’s development. It serves as a guide for decision-making and investment in various sectors, ensuring coordinated and sustainable growth. 

The Northeast Development Commission has identified Taraba State as an economic hub within the region, emphasizing the importance of having a master plan to leverage this potential.
Lessons from Abuja’s Master Plan
Nigeria’s Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, serves as a notable example of the benefits of a master development plan.

Developed in the 1970s and continuously updated, the Abuja Master Plan has guided the city’s infrastructure development, promoted sustainable growth, attracted investments, and improved the quality of life for its residents. 

Other states, such as Lagos and Rivers, have also adopted similar plans, resulting in enhanced infrastructure, economic growth, and social well-being.

In conclusion, for Taraba State to achieve its full potential and ensure coordinated and sustainable development, the adoption of a master development plan is crucial. Such a plan would provide a strategic framework for all sectors, ensuring continuity, attracting investments, and improving the quality of life for its residents. 

The state government, local governments, and developmental partners must collaborate in creating and implementing a comprehensive development plan that addresses both present and future needs. Only through such strategic planning can Taraba State move forward and capitalize on its economic and developmental potential.

Comrade Fidelis Nashuka is the CEO (Advocate for Environmental Sustainability and Social Justice). Safe Environment and Community Initiative (SECHI) State President: National Council of NGOs and CSOs in Nigeria

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