– As NIM holds Centenary Management Day Lecture
For Nigeria to achieve its goal of being among the best 20 economies by the year 2020, the principles of good management must be imbibed and deployed in maximising its abundant human and natural resources.
This was the submission of the President and Chairman of Council, Nigerian Institute of Management (Chartered) and former President, Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria (PSN), Dr Nelson U. O. Uwaga.
Uwaga made this assertion while presenting his welcome address at theNigerian Institute of Management (NIM)’s Centenary Management Day Lecture, held at the Nigerian Institute of International Affairs, Victoria Island, Lagos, in April.
At the gathering, which was also used to mark the country’s centenary commemoration,Uwaga noted that for Nigeria to be taken seriously among the comity of nations and for it to move from where it is to where it desires to be, it must begin to gravitate towards management excellence in all aspects of national life, adding that it is one of the surest ways of setting the nation on the path of greatness as it begins another century.
Earlier in his speech, the NIM boss had stated that one of the reasons the institute held both the annual lecture and the centenary celebration at the same time, was to contribute its quota to the steps being taken to taken to move the nation to the next level.
“The institute thought it wise to join government, other well-meaning Nigerians and corporate bodies to celebrate the nation’s accomplishments,” he said.”In doing this, we will also be looking critically at the challenges and prospects and put forward the best way to manage the nation and its abundant resources to set it on the path of sustainable development in the years ahead.”
Delivering the keynote address, titled, “Defining Nigeria’s Nationhood at 100 Years: The Viewpoint of Management”,Prof. Cornelius Alaba
Ogunsanwo of Lead City University, who had beenNigerian ambassador to Belgium, Luxemburg and the European Union at different times, observed that while Lord Lugard’s attempt at amalgamatingthe Southern and Northern Protectorates to form Nigeria in 1914 was purely for administrative and financial reasons, it was necessary to ascertain whether the successive managers of the nation in the past one hundred years had succeeded in moulding the various nationalities of the country into one nation.
“If the foundation laid was on sand which could not but be shifting, what efforts have we made to ensure that indeed we really want to build a nation out of the multiplicity of nations within Nigeria?” he queried.
Citing several indices, including the unending struggle for resource control and the spate of bombings and incessant killings in the Northern part of the country, the university don noted that that the task of nation building had not been properly handled by the country’s managers.He consequently counseled that concrete steps must be taken to improve the status quo. Such steps, according to him, includefull return to true federalism, abolition of central control of the nation’s resources, reduction of federal responsibility to key areas and allowance of regional constitution which would include police powers,
“There is need for massive devolution of power and responsibilities to the second tier of government, which we advocate should be based on the existing six geo-political zones, which will now be regions. Within each region, there will be provincial governors since our politicians love titles,” Ogunsanwo said.
The colourful event was attended byprominent personalities and professionals from all walks of life, including Mrs Margaret Adeleke, first female president, NIM; Prof. Munzali Jibril, Deputy President, NIM; Pharm. Azubike Okwor, immediate past president, PSN; Pharm (Sir) Ifeanyi Atueyi, publisher, Pharmanews; and Pharm. Jimi Agbaje.