NILDS Boss Reiterates the Significance of Capacity Development for State Houses of Assembly

  • Thursday August 22, 2019 13:17 PM
  • NILS Press Corps
At the roundtable for the Conference of Speakers of State Houses of Assembly under the auspices of the National Institute for Legislative and Democratic Studies, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Rt. Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila urged State Houses of Assembly to save Local Government Area system in Nigeria from imminent collapse through its instrument of Law making.

Declaring the round-table open, Gbajabiamila, represented by Hon. Idris Wase, the Deputy Speaker, House of Representatives, said a revitalised local government system would bring about effective governance.
He said that for a more robust ninth Assembly, there is need for State Assemblies to invest in knowledge acquisition by running short and long term courses in areas such as budget implementation and related programs so that through oversight engagements, they could insist in real value for money on contracts awarded for the well-being of citizens in whose mandate they stood.
Gbajabiamila disclosed that the National Assembly would commence its process on the work of its constitutional review committee.
“In that process, there will be need for synergy with State Houses of Assembly.
“There is need for caution. The caution lies in our collective efforts to ensure that the work of lawmakers be it in state or national do not suffer any infringement.
“We must not only be seen to be working but work in a way that our work would speak for us", he said.

He commended NILDS for organising the round-table, saying the timing was apt given that the ninth Assembly was just concluding it’s preparation for proper take off in its four years duration flight.
In a goodwill message , Rt. Hon. Mudashiru Obasa, Chairman of the Conference of Speakers of State Legislators of Nigeria and Speaker, Lagos State House of Assembly, urged relevant stakeholders to intensify efforts toward implementation of the constitutional provision of financial autonomy to state legislature and judiciary with a view to strengthening democracy.
“It is well over a year that President Muhammadu Buhari gave assent to financial autonomy for both state legislature and judiciary in the last constitution review exercise,” he said.
Obasa who was represented by Hon. Abel Peter Dia, Speaker, Taraba State House of Assembly urged the lawmakers to be active participants at the round-table.

Also speaking, Speaker, Oyo State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Adebola Ogundoyin, said the lawmakers as democrats want the laws implemented which was part of the reasons for the round-table.

“There are a lot of LGA issues. We intend to resolve them once and for all and all arms of govt. must sit to agree in implementation,” he said.

Earlier in his welcome address, the Director General, National Institute of Legislative and Democratic Studies (NILDS), Prof. Abubakar Sulaiman said the lawmakers had enormous responsibilities to the Nigerian people in the spheres of ensuring good governance, providing a forum for grassroots representation and oversights.
“State legislatures need the necessary capacity to perform the enormous and tedious responsibilities saddled on them by the constitution.
He urged the lawmakers to be active participants at the round-table, geared towards strengthening the capacity of law making in Nigeria.
He said the round-table was geared toward reviewing activities of Houses of Assembly to identify the challenges.
He however urged the lawmakers to take advantage of the Masters and Diploma courses offered by the Postgraduate School of the Institute, which are offered in affiliation with UNIBEN to further build capacity and expertise.

Credit: NAN, CHOM