Speaker of the House of Representatives, Rt. Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila has commended the National Institute for Legislative and Democratic Studies (NILDS) for its contributions to growing democracy and legislative principles in Nigeria.
This is even as he commended the Director General Prof. Abubakar Sulaiman and his predecessor Prof. Ladi Hamalai for their efforts at repositioning the institute.
Represented by the Deputy Speaker, Hon. Idris Ahmed Wase, Gbajabiamila said this at the 2018/2019 Matriculation ceremony of the NILDS/UNIBEN Postgraduate Programme.
He commended NILDS for successfully obtaining the license to offer distance learning for its Post Graduate programmes.
He charged the institute not to relent in advancing legislative and democratic principles in Nigeria while commending the institutes for training the right manpower that would boost the legislature.
He charged the student to make the best of the opportunity to contribute to building a better legislature.
Earlier, the Director General of NILDS, Prof. Abubakar Olarewaju Sulaiman who presented the 79 matriculating students to the VC, said that most of them were nominated from the various offices and departments in the National Assembly.
He noted that it his wish to see a national spread of the programme, noting that he would endeavor to reach out to States that have not been captured yet in the programme.
The DG further informed the audience that the Institute has obtained the license to run distance learning Postgraduate programmes, which will soon takeoff.
He however appealed to the leadership of National Assembly to continue to support the Institute, especially in the area of funding that would guarantee the speedy completion of the ultra-modern Permanent site of the NILDS.
He expressed optimism that with support from the National Assembly, the Institute would occupy the building before the end of the year.
Speaking at the event, the Vice Chancellor of the University of Benin, Prof. Faraday Orumwease commended NILDS for setting the pace in terms of manpower development within the legislature.
Orumwease also commended the leadership of NILDS and indeed that of the National Assembly for its sustained efforts to prioritise human and institutional capacity building.
He said that such training would serve as a panacea to inefficiency, underperformance and weak leadership decisions, not only in Nigeria, but across Africa.
He described the collaborative post graduate programme as one of the most sought after programmes of the University, adding that the operating license had been given by the National Universities Commission (NUC).
Prof. Orumwease implored the students to endeavor to preserve the integrity and legacy of the programme that has been established since the inception of the affiliation. He went ahead to admit the 79 students into the Postgraduate school of University of Benin.
He listed some of the programmes being run to include: Masters in Parliamentary Administration; Masters in Legislative Studies; Masters in Law, (LLM) Legislative Drafting; Masters in Elections and Party Politics; PGD in Elections and Political Party Management