By Joseph INOKOTONG
The Federal Government is poised to assist the Centre for Management Development (CMD) to increase its capability for institutional capacity and human resources development to aid effective delivery of government’s economic plans and national management objectives.
Minister of Budget and National Planning, Senator Udoma Udo Udoma, told staff of the Centre at the weekend in Lagos that Nigeria is blessed with a lot of human and natural resources which need better management to harness their full potential.
As an institution set up by government to provide management training, the CMD has an important role to play in improving the quality of management in Nigeria.
A statement signed by Akpandem James, Media Adviser to the Minister said the minister informed the staff that he was at the institution to see for himself the facilities at the Centre and to encourage the staff to brace up for the responsibilities ahead in achieving the successful implementation of the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP).
“We came in as a government determined to change Nigeria, determined to change the way things are being done, to change Nigeria from a nation of consumers to a nation of producers. So we want fundamental change and we have been working to put together a series of policies to achieve that; and that is what is contained in the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan”, he explained.
He explained that the ERGP is a national plan requiring contributions from everybody for its successful implementation. As a parastatal under the Ministry of Budget and National Planning, the CMD has a critical role in the ERGP. “As the coordinating Ministry we have to be at the vanguard of its implementation. I therefore want everybody in the Centre for Management Development to familiarize themselves with the details of the Plan and to take responsibility for promoting and assisting in the implementation of the Plan.” he added.
In order to achieve the objectives of the Plan, he emphasized the urgent need to develop institutional capacity as well as capacity for human resources management.
He acknowledged the challenges faced by the CMD, and promised to help them to meet some of these challenges. However, he advised the institution to focus on making better use of the extensive facilities which he had just inspected. With better usage of their facilities, he felt that the CMD has the potential to generate enough revenue to meet all their operational needs, and indeed be a net revenue earner for the government. “You should see yourself also as a revenue generating agency of the government”, he reminded them, adding that, at this time where the country is experiencing revenue challenges, every single agency of government must be able to think outside the box, by finding innovative ways of cutting costs and generating revenues.
The management was told that improving the quality of its services will help the institution generate more revenue and save them the problem of always running to Abuja for funds when they already have a gold mine in Lagos.
“We will be giving you support but we will be expecting more optimal use of your facilities, and more diligent work from you. Your work is very important and critical, training sets of people who will go out there to change things in Nigeria,” he pointed out.
Senator Udoma reminded the management and staff of their mandate, pointing out that it is not restricted to training but also includes accrediting management trainers, assuring standards and monitoring quality.
Explaining the importance of quality management in the process of development, the Minister said the real wealth of a nation is not in the natural resources, but in the people. By maximizing the capacity of the people, especially the creative energy of the youth, a nation can achieve faster growth and sustained development, he said.
The Director General of the institution, Dr Kabiru Usman, while pointing out that there are several challenges the management is battling with, also noted that budgetary allocation to the institution is better this year than those of previous years.
Also the Deputy Director General and Head of the Lagos Centre, Dr Okeniyi, said the visit of the Minister to the institution “cannot but bring about a wholesome and meaningful intervention to a very beleaguered Centre” and indicated that the staff are looking up to the Minister for a meaningful change.