Plateau’s Governor Simon Lalong says national aspirations should not be subjected to political, ethnic or religious biases if Nigeria must change the trajectory of lack of effective implementation of policies.
The governor made the observation at the inauguration of Senior Executives Course (SEC) 43 of the National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies (NIPSS), Kuru, near Jos, on Monday, March 1.
“We must look at the larger picture in implementing policies that impact the lives of our people today and in the future. Examples are all over the world for us to learn from,’’ he said.
He said the theme of the course: “Getting Things Done: Strategies for Policy Implementation in Nigeria’’, was apt and crucial because of its importance to national development.
The governor expressed concerns that brilliant policies formulated by different administrations were not effectively implemented, leading to loss of resources.
“It is an incontestable fact that over the years in Nigeria, numerous brilliant policies have been formulated in different sectors and by different administrations.
“However, the paradox is that only a fraction of these numerous policies is implemented with many of them either jettisoned, abysmally carried out or left to gather dust on shelves.
“This has led to a lot of distortions in the process of nation-building where many policies have to be re-casted all over again, implemented half-way or entirely abandoned.
“In the process, the nation incurs enormous losses in terms of wasted resources, manpower and valuable time,’’ he said.
Lalong said some of the reasons attributed to the lack of effective implementation of policies in Nigeria were corruption, lack of continuity in government policies, inadequate human and material resources, poor leadership programmes, sectionalism and ethnic biases and lack of political will.
He said challenges of insecurity, poverty, illiteracy, poor transportation, inadequate infrastructure, abuse of power and intolerance, among others, could be traced to the inability to effectively implement policies at various times.
He noted that policies formulated to administer forests and their resources were scrapped, saying the result is that they have become ungoverned spaces where criminals use as hideouts to terrorise the people.
“The same story is replicated in various sectors of the economy,’’ he said.
In his remarks earlier, the Acting. Director-General of NIPPS, Brig.-Gen. Chukwuemeka Udaya said that the course was organised to ensure that participants proffered usable recommendations and implementation strategies to tackle critical challenges in the country.
He said that the institute, in line with its new strategic plan, had expanded the number of participants of the course whose admission was keenly contested.
“The number rose from 76 participants to 85 participants in line with our strategic plan of 2019 to 2023. Correspondingly, the number of study groups has risen from six to seven
Udaya said the curriculum for the course was broad-based, rich, flexible and organised around course modules to achieve the aim of the course, saying participants would also go on local and international tours to broaden their horizons.
“This is to enable participants to interact with critical stakeholders towards gathering relevant information for the purpose of addressing the demands and expectations of the course,’’ he said.
He said the course was organised to inculcate in participants, strategic skills to respond to emergencies and crisis situations and also to find lasting solutions to the challenges of policy and programmes implementation.
While inaugurating the course, Vice-President Yemi Osinbanjo, said unsuccessful implementation of policies had been the pitfall impeding development in the country.
The vice-president tasked the participants to contribute to the search for solutions to national challenges, noting that the institution was reputable for its pragmatic solutions to difficult challenges.
Ripples Nigeria gathered that the course modules include leadership, policy and strategy, understanding the Nigerian state, defence and security studies and peace and conflict studies.
A minute of silence was also observed in honour of the departed Director- General of the Institute, Prof. Habu Galadima, who died last December.
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