The Chairman of the Nigerian Economic Summit Group (NESG), Mr Asue Ighodalo has said the Group is collaborating with state legislators to boost economic growth at the grassroot.
He said the Final Report of a peer review to boost grassroots development was submitted to the National Assembly on February 29, 2016 and subsequently, the National Assembly, the NESG and the NBA-Section on Business Law activated a working partnership by establishing through the National Assembly Business Environment Roundtable (NASSBER) with the NESG serving as the Secretariat of NASSBER.
According to him, “NASSBER’s main mandate was to review all of the identified laws, bills, and regulations, and also identify areas of legislative gap and provide technical support in the crafting of the required work output necessary to provide the appropriate legislative framework.”
Reeling out the need for collaboration with legislators, he said, “Challenges facing our great country require a multi-dimensional approach to resolving them and I am convinced that to overcome our economic challenges, the legislature is one of the institutions that must be engaged, and to collaborate with the private sector to ensure that the appropriate solutions we require are underpinned by a supportive legislative framework.
“Over the years, most of the effort towards Nigeria’s development has been driven mainly by the Federal Government and it’s become clear that this was insufficient. In order to put Nigeria on the trajectory to meaningful and strong economic growth, it is pertinent that the subnational governments are empowered with the necessary statutory tools which will eliminate the barriers that legal and constitutional barriers, which inhibit the inclusive economic growth unlocking of their potentials.
“Accordingly, there is now a need for focused and persistence. This has necessitated the strong need for a dialogue between the sub-national governments and the private sector to act on legislative frameworks that can deliver sustainable quick economic recovery, as well as fast-paced growth and effective development, which must be driven by states and local governments.”
He added that the task of attaining a favourable business environment and achieving global competitiveness requires appropriate legislation in each of the 36 states, adding that, the High-Level Dialogue will be the beginning of a strong and viable collaboration in the national interest.
In his remarks, the Chairman, Conference of Speakers of State Legislatures, Abubakar Y. Suleiman, said, “the state lawmakers in Nigeria shall continue to discharge their legislative responsibility for the growth and development of our country, though to the extent that the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria grants State Houses of Assembly the powers to do so.”
He added, “At this juncture, it is important to stress the importance of decongesting Exclusive Legislative List for the Concurrent List. In other words, certain items in the Exclusive List should be moved into Concurrent List for better legislation. We are hopeful this would be achieved in the ongoing exercise of the Constitution review.
“We are pleased to grant the request for collaboration with the Nigerian Economic Summit Group with a view to facilitating sub-national legislative frameworks that will deliver sustainable economic development at the sub-national level in the priority sectors of the economy.
“We acknowledge your passion for development and the spirit of patriotism which have been at the core of your operations since the inception. We, at the Conference of Speakers, are glad to engage and collaborate with you for the good of our nation.”