Over the years, good governance has been a challenge to sustainable development and growth in Africa in general, and particularly in Nigeria. The good news is, I am convinced, that as dismal as the general experience may be, Africa’s situation is not entirely hopeless, given recent emerging indicators from some African countries. What is needed is a combination of visionary and competent policies that promote local value, infrastructural renewal program, restoration of previously tested and proven standards of governance; and an active citizenry that must deepen and sustain the capacity to engage and trouble the system.
Good governance is defined as a manner in which power is exercised in the management of a country’s social and economic resources for development. Consequently, good governance is meant to be a people-driven, participatory, transparent and accountable government. Chinua Achebe in his book titled “The problem with Nigeria” stated that the problem with Nigeria is the problem of Leadership. Good governance can be delivered by a leader that can guarantee peaceful and free revolt when things are not going as a popularly expected.
In the immediate post independent period, Nigeria was relatively more developed than some of the countries which are celebrated today as development models. Despite some imperfection, we had a robust parliamentary administration, and a well facilitated and healthy federal structure. However, a lot has change over the years, arguably because of cumulative effect of bad governance, incompetent leadership and the institutionalization of corruption as if it is a part of the directive principles of state policy. Other deficits recorded so far include the following incompetence of many public officers, which lead to poor policy articulation and poor policy outcomes; impunity and non-enforcement of laws and regulations; non-transparent handling of public resources; deliberate skewing of public and corporate policies for the attainment of private and selfish goals. In good Governance, there are five fundamental to transform the country; namely Government Policy Stability, Electoral Legitimacy, Peace and Security, Rule of Law and Anti-Corruption.
International Organization Sustainable Development (IOSD) began in 2006 as a non profit organization with a mandate to administer the EUCLID University extension program and also develop and implement other programs related to sustainable development. The mission of IOSD is to foster the well-being of all human beings by promoting sustainable economic development, inter-cultural dialogue, and facilitating access to world-class higher education, especially in developing nations of Africa and the pacific.
Our developing partners such as the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), is an organization established in 1965 to foster “sustainable human development” in impoverished nations gained their independence in the early 1960s, the UN recognized a need for opportunity by the emerging governments and their people. In its development efforts, the UNDP strives to reduce poverty; increase literacy; create jobs; enhance technical cooperation between industrialized and non-industrialized nations preserve and protect the environment; and ensure that women receive recognition, encouraging, and training. The UNDP has taken a lead role in helping countries create national development plans that integrate management, protection, and regeneration of the environment. At the same time, it has helped these countries create local action plans to combat water pollution, biodiversity loss, and depletion of the ozone layer. In addition to its fieldwork in emerging nations, the UNDP coordinates all operational development activities of the UN. It also helps to organize international responses to natural and human-caused disasters around the world.
In conclusion governance and capacity building are guided by a number of key principles which reflect the essential attributes of well-functioning public sectors and a creation of conducive environment for the private sector to function efficiently in the creation of wealth. Training and establishment of knowledge database centre’s (Library) close to people for access to updated information is a project being unattended to.
AMB (Dr) Timothy Ihemadu is head of Mission, Nigeria International Organization for Sustainable Development (IOSD). Being excerpts a paper presented at the First International Conference on Development by Integrity International Magazine at Abuja, June 16, 2011.
By AMB Timothy Ihemadu
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