DAI Hosts “Governance Matters” Roundtable in Abuja, Nigeria

March 09, 2018

Abuja, Nigeria—DAI yesterday hosted leading figures from Nigeria’s government, civil society, and the international community in a productive discussion of the role of governance in delivering the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Issued under the auspices of the United Nations, the 17 SDGs are a call to action designed to end poverty, protect the planet, and ensure that all people enjoy peace and prosperity.

“The word governance does not appear anywhere in the titles of the 17 goals,” said DAI Country Director Dr. Joe Abah, who hosted the roundtable at the Transcorp Hilton in Abuja. “But the truth is that governance is everywhere in the SDGs—and without good governance, the goals will be very difficult to achieve.”

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Panelists included, from left, DAI Country Director Dr. Joe Abah; Governor of Kaduna State Mallam Nasir El-Rufai; Governor of Kano State Dr. Abdullahi Umar Ganduje; Professor Isaac Adewole, the Honorable Minister of Health; and Yaya Hamza, representing Princess Adejoke Orelope-Adefulire, the Senior Special Assistant to the President on SDGs.

Among the panelists who discussed the centrality of good governance and efficient administration to Nigeria’s development—including health, education, poverty reduction, economic growth, human capacity development, and devolution of powers—were Mallam Nasir El-Rufai, the Governor of Kaduna State; Dr. Abdullahi Umar Ganduje, the Governor of Kano State; Professor Isaac Adewole, and the Honorable Minister of Health and Princess Adejoke Orelope-Adefulire, the Senior Special Assistant to the President on SDGs. Paul Arkwright, the British High Commissioner to Nigeria, also lent support to the event.

“We intend that this roundtable will yield tangible, pragmatic, and achievable recommendations that governments at all levels—federal, state, and local—can advocate for and implement to improve governance and, ultimately, service delivery for the Nigerian people,” said Abah.

In addition to the distinguished speakers, the discussions featured senior representatives from the international donor, civil society, and implementing partner community, including: Stephen Haykin, U.S. Agency for International Development Mission Director; Debbie Palmer, Head of Office, U.K. Department for International Development Nigeria; Jeremy Kanthor, Managing Director of DAI Governance Sector; and Asishana Okauru, Director-General of the Nigeria Governors Forum.

Governance Matters is the first of a series of high-level events collectively known as the “DAI Development Matters” series, which will seek to strengthen the nexus between central governance institutions (such as planning, budgeting, and human resources) and service delivery performance in key sectors such as health, education, infrastructure, agriculture, and trade and investment.

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