High Turnover of Lawmakers: Ekweremadu Seeks UNDP’s Support towards Capacity Building

The Deputy President of the Senate, Senator Ike Ekweremadu has solicited the support of the United Nations Development Programme, UNDP, and its partners towards capacity building for the incoming lawmakers.
Senator Ekweremadu spoke during a strategic meeting between the National Institute for Legislative Studies, NILS, and the UNDP Democratic Governance for Development, GDG, Project team in Abuja.
The Senator, who also chairs the Governing Council of NILS, said pre-inauguration capacity building for the next legislatures was imperative, especially given the high turnover of lawmakers across the country, which he said takes tolls on both experience and material resources.
He said: “You are aware of the constant turnover of parliamentarians. It is obvious that this year will not be different, given what we have already seen during the primary elections across the parties. So, between the end of the elections and the inauguration of the new parliaments, we need to deal with the capacity of those who are coming newly and to enable them to interact with the older ones”.
He stressed that the planned training by NILS, would “help to bridge the gap between expectations of Nigerians and reality”.
The Deputy President of the Senate assured that Nigeria was “committed to credible elections that will be free, fair, and peaceful” and thanked the UNDP for its support to the nation’s democracy, especially the recently concluded constitution amendment.
In his remarks, the Project Director of the DGD, Dr. Mourtada Deme, assured that the UNDP was always willing to partner with the National Assembly to deepen Nigeria’s democracy.
He commended the federal legislature for the successful completion of the Fourth Amendment of the 1999 Constitution and lauded Senator Ekweremadu for his leadership.
Dr. Deme observed: “The news of your accomplishment regarding the successful passage of the constitutional amendment came to as no surprise. We have worked closely with you and we acknowledge your leadership, hard work, and consultations.
“Democracy is work in progress and we know that you are working hard to address the challenges of governance and I would like to reiterate our commitment to supporting the process”.
He explained that the European Union, EU, and the UNDP were in the process of finalising the last details of their interventions towards further support for the legislature in Nigeria.

Uche Anichukwu
Special Adviser (Media) to Deputy President of the Senate