Open Letter to President Buhari on Diapora Matter

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Abike Dabiri

Comment

By Peter Chinweuba

I am writing as a concerned member of the Nigerians in Diaspora. I reside in Canada. I have diverse experience living both home and abroad. Mr. President, the press release regarding the Nigeria Diaspora Commission (NIDCOM) is of a great concern and I hope my letter will help set the right pace for Nigerians abroad; thus, the people can be rightly represented.

Normally, I would not bother about government appointments but when I think of my experience living abroad, I see NIDCOM as an opportunity that should not be jeopardized. Below are the 5-points criteria and qualifications that should be considered for Chairman of NIDCOM:

One, any Nominee should have resided in or worked in the Diaspora for any extended period of time; for at least 10 years; two, any nominee should have full personal experience about the struggle and pain of the average Diaspora, and must be able to fully articulate what it meant to be a Diaspora.

Thirdly, any Nominee should have consistently been pro-NIDO; both in public and in behind the scene activities. Serving with and understanding the structure of NIDO should be one of the necessary requirements. Because the NIDCOM Establishment Act designated NIDO as the main government recognized entity; and NIDO is also recognized by the law of Nigeria as codified in the NIDCOM Act.

Fourthly, any Nominee should be able to provide new blood and a fresh vision that will energize the Diaspora, and should be able to leverage and synergize the immense talents and expertise of the Diaspora in the development of Nigeria as envisaged by the NIDCOM Act.

Also, any Nominee should not bring the civil service mentality to running the day to day affairs of NIDCOM. The Nigerian civil service model will fail NIDCOM! Moreover, the Nigerian civil service model and work ethics are woefully inadequate to fully leverage the importance of NIDCOM. Whereas, for Nigeria to realize NIDCOM’s potentials, from its inception, NIDCOM must be run efficiently and effectively to fulfill its mission objectives.

Chinweuba is a member of Canada NIDOA