Onyebuchi Ezigbo in Abuja
The National Coordinator/ Chief Executive Officer, African Union Development Agency- New Partnership for Africa’s Development, Princess Gloria Akobundu, has said the organisation was gradually but steadily achieving the economic transformation agenda for the continent.
Akobundu who is also Coordinator of the African Peer Review Mechanism (AUDA-NEPAD/APRM), Nigeria said the agency was about to carry out the second Peer review in the country 11 years after the first edition was conducted.
This was contained in a statement signed by the Media Assistant to the NEPAD boss, Abolade Ogundimu.
According to the agency’s boss, the agency which was established to ensure good governance and national development, started the year 2019 by partnering and engaging various stakeholders round the country to ensure that general elections and other elections were held and successful.
“The Agency also followed up after elections by contributing its quota on how to proffer lasting solution to electoral violence, we engaged key stakeholders in a summit titled ‘Terrorism, Insurgency and Incidence of Electoral Violence in Nigeria: The Role of Security Agencies’, the recommendations is already receiving federal government’s attention,” Akobundu added.
“Another major achievement of the agency was the successful special side event jointly organised by AUDA-NEPAD/APRM and Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) Nigeria at the 74th United Nations General Assembly in New York, USA,” she said.
She stated that the event which had the theme “Promotion of International Cooperation to Combat Illicit Financial Flows (IFFs) and Strengthen Good Practices on assets recovery and return to sustainable Development” provided the platform for President Buhari, supported by other African leaders to further tell the world leaders to support fight against financial corruption bedevilling developing nations.
“As we enter 2020, we hope to greatly surpass our current achievements through continuous training of our staff and strategic engagement of stakeholders within our areas of mandates,” she assured.
Akobundu said that President Muhammadu Buhari had approved the transformation of NEPAD Nigeria to AUDA-NEPAD Nigeria in 2019, which is in line with African Union (AU) recommendations to all member states.
According her, the transformation aims at helping the continent to further attain AU’s Agenda 2063 while building on achievements of NEPAD since its establishment in 2001.
“The process is expected to be completed in 2020 as Nigeria has been consistent in the bid to ensure that adequate measures are in place for the country office to operate as a standard branch of the Continental Agency,” she said.
Reflecting further on 2019, the National Coordinator also said the Second Peer Review of the nation was considered 11 years after first Review.
“In line with President Buhari’s commitment to identify root causes of the nation’s challenges at the grassroots in order to provide lasting solutions, approval was given to AUDA-NEPAD/APRM Nigeria to come up with Country’s Self-assessment Reports / National Programme of Action (NPoA) .
“It is a voluntary exercise and a veritable tool for AU member states to identify and solve socio-economic challenges in the continent.
“Once the reports are carefully compiled and presented to APRM Continental for validation and endorsement, Nigeria will be among nations that have done the second Peer Review,” she said.
Akobundu said the Process had been ongoing as President Buhari had constituted the National Governing Council of APRM Nigeria and held its quarterly meeting to discuss how the exercise would be achieved in 2020,” she added.