By Victor Ahiuma-Young
Few days ago, the Voice of business in Nigeria and umbrella body for employers; Nigeria Employers’ Consultative Association, NECA, announced it plans to hold an employers’ submit.
According to NECA, with the theme, “The Private Sector – An Engine of National Development” the summit will hold in Abuja between Monday, 30 and Tuesday, 31 May, 2022.
While President Muhammadu Buhari is expected as the Special Guest of Honour, with other guests included Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo and Speaker of the House of Representatives Femi Gbajabiamila, President of the Africa Development Bank, AfDB, Dr. Akinwumi Adesina, is expected to give the Keynote Address.
Other dignitaries included Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning; Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Minister of Labour and Employment; Members of the Diplomatic Corp and Chief Executives of local and multinational firms.
Giving insight into the reasons behind the summit, Director, Learning & Development/Projects, NECA, Mrs Celine Oni, said the Summit would provide the private Sector and other Stakeholders the privilege to identify and explore the nexus between a thriving Private Sector and National development; the Platform will identify impediments to enterprise competitiveness & employment creation as well as proffer solutions to these impediments.
Workable action points and follow-up mechanisms would also be set.
“The necessity of the Summit is such that NECA and its member companies cannot miss the opportunity of reinforcing and re-affirming NECA’s position as the most credible, non-political and issues-focused voice of business, advocating for the sustainability and competitiveness of the private sector.
“It is such a timely event as the nation gears up for the huge market of the African Continental Free Trade Area AfCFTA, Agreement and achievement of the National Development Plan 2021-2025.
“The Nigeria Employers’ Summit will be a focused gathering of Employers, global business thought-leaders, Governments and other stakeholders.
She informed that some of the objectives the Summit include “creating a credible national advocacy Platform for employers to discuss, dissect and proffer solutions to private sector challenges.
“Through robust discussions and interactions, the Summit outcomes will assist the government to set a National Private Sector Economic Agenda, with the view of facilitating a rapid economic and industrial renaissance of Nigeria.
“Promote the enthronement of the Private Sector as the engine for national development and a veritable tool for curbing the scourge of unemployment and other socio-economic vices facing Nigeria. Deepen collaboration between Social Partners (Employers, Labour & Government), Civil Societies and Youth Organizations.
“The methodology is to create a national conversation on the complex links between enterprise competitiveness as a driver of job creation and National development, not only in Nigeria but also at the global level.
“This will help the Social Partners, Governments (and its Agencies); businesses and Civil Society prioritise their actions. Success stories in the promotion of enterprise competitiveness, combating youth unemployment in African will help elucidate actions that have proved to be most effective in Africa and globally.
“Such empirical evidence will help define a way forward for Nigeria to build on.
“The task of advocating for a friendly environment for businesses to thrive is a collective assignment. While Business Membership Organizations, like ours, have its role to play, members of the Press also have an important role to play.
“We request your partnership and collaboration in this onerous effort of ensuring enterprise competitiveness and National growth by giving massive publication to the Summit and other events.”