By Daniel Njienue, September, 18, 2019, comments/news
ABUJA-Recently, the office of the Deputy President Senate, in collaboration with Policy and Legal Advocacy Centre (PLAC), had a retreat, to strengthen staff proficiency, with a support from the United Kingdom (UK) Department for International Development (DFID). The epochal event was organised for Legislative Aides in the Office of the Deputy Senate President, which according to the organizer was to imbibe the spirit of capacity building and better working condition.
The theme for the retreat was “developing Critical Skills for Legislative Effectiveness/Constitutional Reforms”, aimed at introducing and inducting staff of the Office of Deputy Senate President on legislative aide work, give orientation and induction to staff in the values and focus of the office of DSP, and to produce an action plan to develop strategy and work plan for the office. In the same vein, the workshop was also geared towards staff capacitation and equipment with rudiments, visions and objectives of the DSP office as well as mechanisms for the effective delivery of their duties.
Meanwhile, the Chief of Staff to the Deputy President Senate, Dr. Otive Igbuzor, has expressed deep appreciation to the Senator Omo-Agege, for finding him worthy to serve in his important and strategic office, that promotes national development and service delivery in the parliament. He further expressed his gratitude to Mr. Clement Nwankwo and the board and management of the Policy and Legal Advocacy Centre (PLAC) and the UKAid for supporting the initiative noting that it will build a strong foundation for the Office of the Deputy President of the Senate.
He charged his aides to be very focused in their work, stating that they were not chosen by accident but with conscious effort to procure the right personnel for the office and therefore require absolute concentration and dedication to duty. He reminded the aides that their positions will require them to be committed to promoting the interest of the Deputy President of the Senate at all times and, that their roles in helping the office to deliver on its mandate will be the priority of the aides and without losing sight of the political environment.
On his part, the Executive director of PLAC, Clement Nwankwo He thanked Senator Omo-Agege for embarking on such a strategic and capacity building retreat for aides of his office. He noted that having worked in the National Assembly since the 6th Assembly, he has not seen this type of preparing staff for the task ahead, and stressed that it is the right direction at the right time, to deliver quality leadership for Nigeria
He expressed his admiration for the Deputy President for selecting the person of Dr. Otive Igbuzor as the Chief of Staff and recalled his past engagements with Dr. Otive Igbuzor, in the pro-democracy days and the struggle against military dictatorship. He expressed the willingness and desire of the Policy and Legal Advocacy Centre (PLAC) to partner with the office of the Deputy President of the Senate particularly in the area of constitutional review and law reform and stated the commitment of PLAC to provide institutional and financial support to the work of the office in achieving its mandate and ensuring service delivery. Responding is Sen. Ovie Omo-Agege, who hinted that, it is a welcome development that such retreat would manifest productively in achieving his office mandate to Nigerians, appealing for a continuous support for human resource development programme designed to give qualitative training to the management and staff of the office.
The Deputy Senate President noted that training is necessity, because everyone is needed to be “abreast with global best practices in legislative business, “we are determined to make extra ordinary impact in our legislative history and its only people who are well equipped with the right sense of technical and professional skills, knowledge, attitudes and know-how to produce the right outcomes. We want you to be constantly conscious that there is a burden of excellence on you to discharge with honour and distinction, you cannot afford to be a bastion of poor or average outcomes, only excellence, professionalism and adherence to sound ethics will do. Each of you must dare to be positively different by doing what is right at all times”.he noted
He further reiterated said“your primary mission is to help our APC federal government ably led by His Excellency, President Muhammadu Buhari GCFR, succeed for the collective good of all Nigerians and charged the legislative aides to “evolve unique parliamentary leadership solutions to national challenges”
Speakers at the retreat include, Rahila Ahmadu, who spoke on legistlative procedure and practice, stressing the need for the staff to be familiar with senate standing orders, constitutions, statues and others. Mr. Emmanuel Anyaegbunam, Director, African centre for parliamentary and constitutional studies spoke on legislative aides and their role in the law making process, which he highlighted that there must be effective functional processes and activeness in duty. Others who presented lecture are Dr. Otive Igbuzor, Oscar Ogwuegbu, Dr. Vero Ogbuagu, Dr. Audu, Dr. Umar Aminu , Dr. Jerry Sonny Ugokwe, Nkiru Uzodi, PLAC, Dr. Innocent Mebiri and others, admonished the participants to have the spirit of oneness and consistency in duty call.
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