Onyeama inaugurates boards of NIIA, IPCR, TAC, DTCA

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…calls for prudent management of resources

By Victoria Ojeme

ABUJA– The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama, has inaugurated the boards of agencies under the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Geoffrey Onyeama

This is even as the minister called for the maximum prudent management of resources, saying that the resources available to the ministry are not unlimited.

Onyeama also charged the board members on the fight against corruption which is a core mandate of the President Muhammadu Buhari administration.

The boards inaugurated are the Directorate of Technical Aids Corps (TAC), chaired by its Director-General, Dr Pius Osuyinkanmi; the Nigerian Institute for International Affairs (NIIA) chaired by Hon Bature Umar Sambo; the Institute for Peace and Conflict Resolution (IPCR) chaired by Senator Mohammed Abba-Aji; and the Directorate of Technical Cooperation in Africa (DTCA), chaired by the Minister of State, Foreign Affairs, Khadija Bukar Abba-Ibrahim.

Onyeama said the appointments into the various boards is a call to service and it is not only an honour, but a privilege to serve one’s nation.

Onyeama expressed confidence that the board members would embrace the responsibility with a sense of patriotism and be fired up to contribute their quote to the success of the President Buhari administration.

Onyeama charged the board members not to engage themselves on a day-to-day basis of the running of the organizations, but to see their roles as detached in the running of the organizations.

Onyeama said this is more so that being the guardians of the guards in the different areas of their assignments, their roles should be detached.

Onyeama tasked the board members on strategies to support the agencies so as to facilitate the effective delivery of the mandate of the agencies.

While reminding them of the numbers of time, particularly, a maximum of four times in a year that boards are supposed to sit, Onyeama said he hoped that would not be too difficult and challenging a task for them to meet.

Onyeama told the board members to appreciate that the nation is going through difficult economic times, saying that it should be reflected in governance at all levels, including board governance.

“The resources that we have available, are not unlimited. So, we would expect maximum prudence and not too much demand placed on the resources; very scarce and limited resources that we have available.

“In the same vein, I would urge you to please note that the IPPIS scheme for the payment of salaries in the public service, constrains, prevents the employment of staff without the express permission of the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation,” Onyeama said.

Onyeama added that the same thing applied to ministers, saying that when they were appointed as ministers, they would have loved to come on board with any number of assistants, but that there were very clear rules in that regard.

Onyeama also encouraged the board members to exert all their energies in the direction of the fight against corruption in the country and support the government in its efforts to entrench accountability and transparency in the conduct of official business.

“The guidelines from The Secretary to the Government of the Federation, provides very comprehensive information on the parameters of your appointment and the expectations thereof,” Onyeama further said.

Responding, the Chairman of the Board of the Nigerian Institute of International Affairs, Hon Bature Umar Sambo, said their inauguration as new boards to spearhead activities of various governing councils under the ministry, is a clear testimony of President Buhari’s resolve to further improve bilateral cooperation and international relations with other countries of the world.

“I will like to enjoin all my colleagues in the boards to work as a team and bring the needed change that will improve Nigeria’s international relations,” Sambo said.

Sambo also assured the Minister that their respective boards will work closely with the ministry to achieve the set goals and objectives that established them.

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