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NIPSS boss seeks legal framework for development plan

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The Director-General, National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies, Prof. Ayo Omotayo has said the lack of national priorities was responsible for Nigeria’s developmental challenges.

He noted that the absence of a framework has made political officeholders in the country set their different agendas for the country.

Omotayo added that anyone thinking privately or individually would not by themselves, define national priorities because they would define their problems as national priorities.

He spoke at the Annual Conference of the Institute of Strategic Management of Nigeria with the theme, ‘’Resetting National Priorities: The Role of Strategic Management’’ on Thursday in Abuja.

Omotayo, however, urged the Federal Government to enshrine legal support for its national development plan to ensure its successful implementation.

He said, “The developmental challenges being faced by Nigeria stems from a lack of national priorities on the part of the political and strategic leaders.

“Whenever you have a national development plan, it should be a law.

When we sit down and we define these things as our national development plan, it should be a lot unchangeable for the period that you expect the development plan to last.

But do we have that as a priority to stay on course and say this is what we are going to do until the change comes?
Everybody comes into the office and they personalised national agenda because most of the time when there is no guiding framework, personal objectives become national priorities.”

Omotayo said the current challenges facing Nigeria were leadership, economic inequality, infrastructural deficit, corruption, and governance issues as well as security concerns due to unemployment.

He said that resetting national priorities suggests a profound foray into the recalibration of Nigeria’s national building process.

“There was an urgent need for a strategic realignment of the country’s priorities, with particular emphasis on the pivotal role that strategic management can play in the transformation process.

We face a myriad of challenges ranging from economic disparities, social unions, political complaints, all of which are called nation-building process,” he added.

Since gaining independence, Nigeria has pursued various national development plans and visions in its ongoing quest for effective development strategies. However, it is concerning that these initiatives have fallen short of achieving their intended goals, as evidenced by widespread poverty and deteriorating infrastructure.

Some of the plans according to the International Journal of Economic Development Research and Investment include the First National Development Plan (1962), the Second National Development Plan (1970-74), the third National Development Plan (1975-80), the Fourth National Development Plan 1981-85 and Vision 2020 among others.

SOURCE: PUNCH NEWSPAPER

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