Olawale Ajimotokan in Abuja
The Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF) Boss Mustapha has conferred with the Secretaries to the State Governments (SSGs) and permanent secretaries/heads of Cabinet Affairs Offices from the states in the South-west geo political zone.
The meeting held in Lagos on Thursday was a follow-up to the maiden meeting of the SSGs and Heads/Permanent Secretaries of Cabinet Affairs Offices of the federation in Abuja on May 2, 2019, where the need to explore the framework of community practice where the federating units can learn from each other towards effective delivery of government services was agreed upon.
Mustapha said the South-west meeting will be replicated in the other five geo-political zones, with the South-east version scheduled for Awka, Anambra State on July 11.
The SGF described the Cabinet Affairs Office as the frontline policy management organ of any government and must be repositioned to meet the vision to assist government to take informed decisions that will address the numerous development challenges the country has had to contend with over the years.
“In most developed countries like the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, and some African countries, the Cabinet Affairs Office is known to be the centre of the institutional mechanism that supports government decision-making responsibilities. It supports the development of policy capacity across government, supports line ministries in developing capacity for policy analysis, prepares the public service to manage transitions in government and monitors the implementation of cabinet decisions,” Mustapha said.
He disclosed that during the meeting in Abuja, the SSGs and the permanent secretaries responsible for Cabinet Affairs had undertaken to re-structure and re-organise their administrative frameworks and responsibilities in order to improve service delivery, develop a workable template to guide the synergy among them, adopt a systematic approach for tracking the implementation of policies, programmes and projects approved by the various executive councils and discuss the modalities for operationalising the proposed Community of Practice for the Cabinet Affairs Offices of the Federation.
In his address, the Permanent Secretary, Cabinet Affairs Office, Babatunde Lawal, said effort is being made to expand the scope of work of the Cabinet Affairs Office beyond the usual note taking during the Federal Executive Council and National Council of State, as well as the Police Council meetings usually chaired by the president.