News

August 27, 2023

Govs lament Nigeria’s web of complex interconnected devt challenges 

Govs lament Nigeria’s web of complex interconnected devt challenges 

…Say Governors are more prepared now for governance 

…Hail NGF/UNDP Kigali retreat

By Henry Umoru, Abuja

The thirty- six State Governors under the  aegis  of Nigeria Governors’ Forum,  NGF are lamenting that Nigeria as a country was facing a complex web of interconnected development challenges stemming from a huge trust deficit and an economy highly dependent on oil exports. 

According to the Governors, the country was also enveloped in  a job crisis problem and growing youth population as a result  of rising insecurity and separatist agitations, and a growing number of multi-dimensionally poor. 

Speaking in Kigali, the Rwandan capital on Sunday at the end of  a three-day training on executive leadership, Vice Chairman  of NGF and Governor of Oyo State, Seyi Makinde, said that with the brainstorming  exercise and robust presentations, Nigeria Governors are more prepared now for governance.

Makinde described the leadership retreat organised by the Nigeria Governors Forum in partnership with the United Nations Development Programme, UNDP as a means of deeping governance across the sub-national level.

The theme of the Retreat was ‘Reimagining leadership in a fast-changing world’, just as  the participants engaged in sessions that explored Rwanda’s successful investment destination transformation in digital technology, urban planning and socio-economic transformation, and concluded with a private dialogue with President Kagame. 

A statement at the end of Programme was  jointly signed by the NGF Director  of  Media  and  Public  Affairs,  Abdulrazaque Bello-Barkindo and Christabel Chanda-Ginsberg, Head, Public Engagement, Outreach and Partnership Lead, UNDP Nigeria.

The retreat  was dedicated to fostering dialogue geared towards  reimagining leadership and leveraging innovative technology, drawing inspiration from Rwanda’s transformative journey.

The retreat was attended by 19 Nigerian State Governors at the invitation of the Rwandan President, Mr Paul Kagame.

The statement quoted Gov Makinde thus, “It has been an engaging retreat. I am glad a significant number of governors are here to be part of it so that, together, we can use the knowledge acquired.

“Our discussions have equipped us with adaptive leadership strategies and identifying pathways to effective governance and nationwide sustainable development.”

Speaking on the aim of the retreat, NGF Director General, Asishana Okauru said, “Nigeria faces a complex web of interconnected development challenges stemming from a huge trust deficit, an economy highly dependent on oil exports, a job crisis and growing youth population, rising insecurity and separatist agitations, and a growing number of multi-dimensionally poor. 

 “As a non-partisan organisation and policy arm, the NGF organised this gathering with the objective of fostering transformative leadership and facilitating honest, frank and open dialogue to shape the discourse on these cross-cutting themes.

“Aware of the challenges of governance and aligned to UNDP’s mandate as the lead UN agency on development, Mohamed Yahya, UNDP’s Resident Representative in Nigeria, said the gathering “Offers an opportunity to reimagine Nigeria’s leadership to achieve transformation and nationwide sustainable development.”

The retreat also focused on learning through dialogue – with sessions on rethinking leadership, leading systems, leading self and leading to deliver, as well as learning through observation – with an interactive programme exploring Rwanda’s emergence as an investment destination through visits and exchanges with innovation hub Norrsken House, the Rwanda Development Board and the Mayor of the City of Kigali.

There is a high demand for effective leadership in Africa with recent political challenges and socio-economic crises continuing to adversely impact qualitative advancements toward the attainment of the Sustainable Development Goals and the realization of the African Union’s Agenda 2063, which aspires toward a peaceful, stable and prosperous Africa. 

The statement also quoted UNDP Director of Regional Service Centre, Matthias Naab saying, “Adaptability in leadership has never been so urgent, globally and in Africa. Adaptive leaders possess the unique ability to not only acknowledge the challenges that come their way, but to also harness them as opportunities for growth and innovation.”