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National Assembly Members fail to show up for Training programs with the United States Congress

United States House of Representatives
The Deputy Senate President, Senator Ike Ekweremadu, on Wednesday, revealed that some Nigerian lawmakers were tarnishing the image of the country through non-participation in sponsored foreign training and legislative experience with US Congress,

Harvard and Oxford Universities.

The embittered deputy Senate president, who stated this during an interactive session with chairmen of committees of the

House of Representatives and members of the Governing Council of the National Institute for Legislative Studies (NILS), chided the lawmakers for the ugly development and called for attitudinal change.

According to him, “there was an instance when I was attending a programme at Oxford along with some of our colleagues. They didn’t show up until the last day. In fact, at the US Senate, it took about six months to resolve the problem because they said each time we sent people, they never came.

“So they said they won’t accept any nominees coming for exchange programmes in the US Congress. But we have been able to resolve that. So I want to appeal that if you are nominated for a course, programme or exchange visit, if you will not be able to attend, let us know early enough.A situation where you don’t show up is very embarrassing and doesn’t speak good of us.”

He, however, added that “for those who don’t attend seminars, we must try to bring about some kind of sanctions to ensure that we get our colleagues to attend and if they cannot attend, give the space to those who can attend.”

The Director-General of NILS, Dr (Mrs) Ladi Hamalai, who also expressed dissatisfaction over the lawmakers’ attitude to legislative training, impressed it on them that the training was for their own good.

She said, “I have to express my fears. I held a meeting at the International Law Institute in Washington and one of the questions I was asked was: Ladi, we are willing to come and do the strategic legislative management training in Abuja, but can you guarantee that they will attend? I said I will get back home and consult and let them know.

“I had to say this because when two or three committees were invited, only half of the members expected at the training programme attended.”
Culled from a Nigerian Newspaper, Tribune
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