• Friday February 23, 2018 07:50 AM
  • NILS Press Corps
A Press Conference of the National Institute for Legislative and Democratic Studies (NILDS) took place at the National Assembly Complex, Abuja on Thursday, February 22, 2018 to highlight the expanded mandate of the Institute following the assent of President Muhammadu Buhari to the National Institute for Legislative Studies (Amendment) Act, 2017.

The historic event was chaired by the House of Representatives Committee Chairman on Judiciary who equal as the Chairman of the NILDS’ Steering Committee for the Development of Strategic Plan for NILDS Engagements with Political Actors and Political Officer Holders, Hon. Aminu Shehu Shagari.

Declaring the conference open, Hon. Shagari disclosed that President Muhammadu Buhari had on the 24th January, 2018 signed into law the National Institute for Legislative and Democratic Studies NILS (Amendment) Bill, 2017. He described the passage and signing of the legislation as a significant milestone attained by the National Assembly.

He congratulated the Chairman of the Governing Council and Senate President, Bukola Saraki and the Alternate Chairman and Speaker of House of Representatives, Rt. Hon Yakubu Dogara over the achievement.

Hon. Shagari recalled that prior to the expansion of the mandate of the Institute, the NILS Act 2011 established the Institute to support the legislature in Nigeria and West African Sub-region through the provision of capacity building, training and a bundle of knowledge management activities for a period of seven years.
In her remark, the pioneer Project Coordinator (PC) of the then Policy Analysis and Research Project (PARP) which metamorphosed into NILS, who is also the pioneer Director General of NILS and currently, the Director General, NILDS, Prof. Ladi Hamalai asserted that as part of the expanded mandate of the Institute which include the re-naming of NILS to NILDS as captured by the assented NILDS Amendment Act 2018, there are slight adjustment of the objectives of the Institute and its name to gain acceptability by wider political class and sharpen some of its functions as Core Centre for Capacity Building in Democratic Governance.

Prof. Hamalai revealed that Section 2 of the Principal Act is amended as thus:
(a) In sub-section (2) by inserting new paragraphs (n), (o) and (p)”after the existing paragraph (m) - “Paragraph (n) act as the Centre for Continuing Education and Advocacy on Democratic Processes and Institutions”.
(a) In sub-section (3) (i) by substituting the existing paragraph (i) – “(i) Provide Training Courses and Degrees on Democracy, Party Politics, Electoral Process, Legislative Practice and Procedures, Political Culture and Development”.