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Analysis: Learning From Rwanda: Why Nigeria Needs Effective Governance Scorecard

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Surely it is clear: holding leaders accountable is the only way Nigeria and other countries can make the progress in the human development so needed at this special moment in history.

…Surely it is clear: holding leaders accountable is the only way Nigeria and other countries can make the progress in the human development so needed at this special moment in history.

Could a governance scorecard reduce corruption and improve governance in Africa? In Nigeria?

Could it hold leaders accountable and improve government performance?

Could it reduce corruption and ensure that citizens participate in important decisions that affect their lives?

This is a lot to ask from a scorecard, but Rwanda, which has pioneered such a model, has seen stunning improvement in economic, political, and social development. This progress is due, in great part, to a number of “homegrown initiatives” that track government performance, involve ordinary citizens in that tracking, and hold leaders accountable for making measurable progress in their communities and country. Results from Rwanda indicate that holding leaders accountable with a measurable scorecard could do all of these things in Nigeria and in Africa.

Since the 1994 Genocide Against the Tutsi, Rwanda has delivered impressive development results, including rapid economic growth and poverty reduction. At 61.3 per cent, Rwanda has the highest proportion of women in parliament of any country in the world. The innovative use of technology, such as drones, is being used to deliver medicines to remote areas. With a very high rate of immunization, almost universal insurance coverage and a focus on gender equity and female education, Rwanda has seen rapid and significant declines in infant, child, and maternal mortality.

Life expectancy for women in Rwanda is 71; in Nigeria, it is 56. For men, it is 67 in Rwanda and 54 in Nigeria. In Nigeria, the infant mortality rate (deaths per 1,000 live births) is 74. In Rwanda, it is 26. In Nigeria 1,222 women per 100,000 die in pregnancy or childbirth. In Rwanda, this maternal mortality rate is 297. This is in spite of the fact that Nigeria is, by all measures, significantly richer than Rwanda.

How did this happen, as Rwanda was devasted in 1994; essentially, there was not a country, but only death and destruction everywhere.

To make a rapid and impressive change like this requires at least four things: a shared vision of a better future, a plan for implementing the vision, a way to monitor progress (or not) toward that vision, and accountability for those in charge of implementing the vision. All of these elements are in place in Rwanda.

After the 1994 genocide, Rwanda developed what they call homegrown solutions to address some of its enormous societal challenges. All of these homegrown solutions engage citizens in evaluating public services such as education, health, and leadership, and all are based on traditional practices. Simply put, they hold leaders accountable for providing for the common good. Few outside Rwanda understand or appreciate the importance of these citizen-based efforts and the level of citizen participation in governance.

Three of the most significant are called Ubudehe, Imihigo, and the Rwanda Governance Scorecard. Ubudehe is a participatory process developed from a traditional concept of working collectively in agriculture. Ubudehe took place when all social and ethnic groups prepared the fields together before the rains came and the planting season arrived. It now refers to a participatory process of budgeting and planning at the village level, whereby citizens themselves allocate decentralized funds according to village priorities. Imihigo is a traditional ritual that occurred when a group of people came together and engaged publicly in activities that tested their bravery. The community was being tested as well as the individual. Imihigo is now used in Rwanda at all levels to represent a performance management contract. It is used to set and evaluate progress in all areas – education, health, governance, food security, business, etc. It is a powerful tool used to keep leaders accountable and transparent.

The Rwanda Governance Scorecard, produced by the Rwandan Governance Board was launched ten years ago to assess the status of governance in Rwanda. The scorecard evaluates performance on eight essential “pillars”: including the Rule of Law, Political Rights and Civil Liberties, Participation and Inclusiveness, Safety and Security, Investing in Human and Social Development, Economic and Corporate Governance, Anti-Corruption. In each pillar, data are collected from the most reliable international and national data sources, including IMIHIGO as well as nationwide citizen satisfaction data emerging from the Citizen Report Card. The Citizen Report Card is a public audit tool where citizens provide feedback on service delivery in Agriculture, Livestock, Infrastructure, Land and Private sector, Education, Health, Hygiene and sanitation, Social Welfare and Family issues, Gender-Based Violence, Local Administration, Justice, Governance, and Human rights and Security.

The Governance Scorecard uses data from the Citizen Report Card as well as many other indicators and data sources. It is a complex and statistically sound undertaking. The data are compared to national and sector-based targets and commitments, to determine where progress is – or is not – being made on these commitments. The scorecard results are taken very seriously in Rwanda. Leaders are held accountable for reaching the agreed-upon targets. Numerous senior leaders have lost their positions for not making progress in their specific sector. This year, the safety and security pillar which focuses on personal security and property, national security, reconciliation, social cohesion, and unity, received the highest score of 95.5 per cent, certainly a very enviable score from a Nigerian point of view.

According to Emmanuel Nibishaka, the deputy chief executive officer of the Rwanda Governance Board (RGB) that coordinates all of these efforts, the scorecard “has helped us to monitor, assess and improve our social, economic and political development. It has consistently triggered key policy actions and strategies which have helped us improve low-performing sectors.”

These data-driven homegrown initiatives have helped foster a culture of accountability and transparency. Every community knows the common objectives, because they helped identify them and, because of the scorecard, every community can see whether their leaders are achieving measurable results.

There are performance scorecards in Nigeria and Africa but they are not institutionalized and leaders are not held accountable. They are mostly from civil society and non-governmental organizations. The most popular and most referenced is the Ibrahim Index of African Governance (by the Mo Ibrahim foundation). Nigeria has consistently scored less than 50% and ranks in the bottom 20%, despite it being Africa’s largest economy.

There have been four coups in West Africa in the last two years. A common thread is that governments are not performing for ordinary citizens. Corruption, poor performance, and citizen frustration are common denominators in all of these countries in which the military has seized power. Could a regular self-assessment and holding leaders accountable for why they were elected help prevent coups and lead to development improvements, as it has in Rwanda?

At AUN, I teach a course on development for all our entering students. Last week, I put a table up listing some basic development indicators for Nigeria, South Africa, Ethiopia, and Rwanda. I asked them which country they thought was doing the best in development performance. The data were clear. The student response was Rwanda. While income is not as high there, as the students pointed out, life expectancy was longer and maternal mortality, infant, and child mortality were lower. Their choice was a reasonable one.

Surely it is clear: holding leaders accountable is the only way Nigeria and other countries can make the progress in the human development so needed at this special moment in history. Scorecards, in addition to other fundamental reforms, would seem to be a very useful tool toward that end.

Source: Premium Times

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Alliance For Youth Nigeria Equips Youth Across The Country For Employment

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Alliance For Youth Nigeria Equips Youth Across The Country For Employment

…Alliance for Youth Nigeria is investing in young Nigerians, equipping
them with the right skills, and information to thrive and succeed in the world of work – Uwadoka

Olushola Okunlade Writes 

Alliance for Youth Nigeria equips youth across the country for employment

Over 200 fresh graduates across Nigeria have received employability skills training facilitated by the Alliance for Youth Nigeria. The training comprised Building Winning Resumes, Career Positioning, Personal Brand Marketing, Personal Effectiveness, Time
Management, and Starting the Career Journey among others.

In addition, the best performers will benefit from internship and mentoring opportunities in the six companies that form part of the Alliance. At the end of the training, some participants of the training also had the unique opportunity of partaking in job interviews and placements, progressing on their career journeys.

Alliance For Youth Nigeria Equips Youth Across The Country For Employment
Left-Right: Mrs. Omomene Odike, CEO, U-Connect Human Resources Limited Edidiong Peters, Public Affairs Specialist, Nestlé Nigeria PLC Victoria Uwadoka, Corporate Communications, and Public Affairs Manager, Nestlé Nigeria PLC; Second Row Left-Right: Oyinlola Lawal, Youth Engagement Analyst, Jobberman Nigeria Damilola Odubanjo, Learning, and Development Associate, Jobberman Nigeria Olugbenga Alabi, Category and Marketing Manager, Coffee, Nestlé Nigeria PLC Uche Aso, Head, Learning and Development, U-Connect Human Resources Limited Lanre Coleman, Head, Recruitment and Outsourcing, U-Connect Human Resources Limited.
Alliance For Youth Nigeria Equips Youth Across The Country For Employment

Launched in August 2021, the Alliance is a business-driven movement of organizations passionate about working together to help young people around the country get the necessary skills to thrive in the world of work. Members of the Alliance for Youth Nigeria include Nestlé Nigeria, Jobberman Nigeria, Sterling One Foundation, Big Bottling Company, the United Nations Global Compact Network Nigeria, and U-Connect HR Limited, with Lagos State Employment Trust Fund and Activate Success International as partner organizations.

The member and partner organizations have positioned themselves to invest in joint and individual projects to give young Nigerians meaningful work experience, internships, readiness-for-work training, and mentoring opportunities in line with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 8 – to promote sustained, inclusive, and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment, and decent work for all by 2030.

The employability skills training is one of the projects of the Alliance designed to meet the target of reaching more than 250,000 young Nigerians with employability and entrepreneurial skills to enable them to secure gainful employment or set up businesses of their own within 3 years. This objective, which was announced during the launch of the Alliance, is in line with their commitment to work together to address the challenges of youth unemployment in the country with the associated social and economic impact.

Alliance For Youth Nigeria Equips Youth Across The Country For Employment
Tosin Babasanya-Craig, Country Manager, Performance Fact Inc. facilitating one of the Alliance for Youth Nigeria sessions to equip youth across the country for employment.

Speaking at the opening session of the training, Victoria Uwadoka, Corporate Communications, and Public Affairs Manager, Nestlé Nigeria PLC said, “I am delighted that yet again, the Alliance for Youth Nigeria is investing in young Nigerians, equipping
them with the right skills and information to thrive and succeed in the world of work. At Nestlé, we believe that society cannot thrive if we fail to offer a future for the young generations. The Alliance will continue to work together with other stakeholders in line with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 8 in fulfilling the huge target we
have committed to and I encourage young people around the country to take advantage of the available opportunities”.

Also speaking at the training, Mrs. Omomene Odike, CEO U-Connect Human Resources Limited, congratulated the youth for their interest and dedication to achieving their career and business goals demonstrated by their participation in the training. She further highlighted the value-adding opportunity of job interviews and placements provided by her organization for participants of the training, urging them to take maximum advantage of the offer.

According to Innih Ikhide, Youth Engagement, and Learning Manager Jobberman Nigeria, “Jobberman is dedicated to creating increased pathways for young people to access dignified livelihoods for a better Nigeria”.

For Naomi Nwokolo, Executive Director, United Nations Global Compact Network Nigeria, “The active engagement of youth in sustainable development efforts is central to achieving sustainable, inclusive, and stable societies by the year 2030, and averting the worst threats and challenges to sustainable development, including the impacts of unemployment. The beneficiaries of the training have shown a willingness to improve their skills and attain professional development and are now more equipped for successful participation in job recruitment processes”.

On behalf of other participants, Adasa Okandiji, commended the member companies for the excellent upskilling platform provided to equip and better position young Nigerians for a productive career, now and in the future. She expressed her readiness and that of other participants, to fully utilize the value-adding information obtained in creating their desired future. She also called on youth across the country to be deliberate about seeking out and taking advantage of existing opportunities, particularly that provided by the Alliance.

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FBNHoldings Wins “Best Performing Stock And Best Stakeholders’ Communications Of The Year” At NIVA Awards 2022

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FBNHoldings Wins "Best Performing Stock And Best Stakeholders’ Communications Of The Year" At NIVA Awards 2022

…FBNHoldings Plc Wins NIVA Awards

Olushola Okunlade Writes

FBNHoldings Plc has won two awards, Best Performing Stock and Best Stakeholders’ Communications of the Year at the 2022 Nigerian Investor Value Awards (“NIVA”) which was held at Lagos Continental Hotel, Lagos last Saturday, May 14th, 2022.

According to the organizers, “Best Performing Stock and Best Stakeholders’ Communications of the Year Award” was conferred on FBN Holdings Plc for proven the resilience of its business model, and recovery capacity across all verticals it participates in, and strategic opportunism in new growth areas.

This award is in recognition of the indelible contributions of FBNHoldings Plc and its subsidiaries to the economic growth of Nigeria, throughout its 128 years of existence; representing all that is enviable about the financial services industry in Nigeria, reinventing itself to transform into a digital bank with sprawling footprints across the country and Africa.

FBNHoldings Wins "Best Performing Stock And Best Stakeholders’ Communications Of The Year" At NIVA Awards 2022
Left-Right: FBNHoldings Plc’s team at the event, Bode Oguntoke, Head, Internal Audit, FBNH, Opeyemi Okojie, Head, Strategy & Corporate Development, FBNH, Wale Ariyibi, Chief Financial Officer, FBNH receiving the award from Jude Chiemeka, Divisional Head, Capital Markets, Nigerian Exchange Limited, Ogho Okiti, MD/CEO BusinessDay Newspaper, and Simisola Salami, Team Lead, Communications & Shareholders Engagement, Investor Relations FBNHoldings Plc at the year 2022 Nigerian Investor Value Awards which held at Lagos Continental Hotel, Kofo Abayomi Street, Lagos last Saturday.

FBN Holdings Plc has been providing exceptional services to its customers, bringing mainstream banking to Nigeria’s 774 LGAs. Through its Agent Banking Platform, they empower people and transform lives. Its shareholders remain key to its success story and every day it strives to deliver quality returns on its investment whilst strengthening the fundamentals of the business through smart investment in technology, our people, and process. As a business, it also prioritizes Nigeria’s Economic, Social, and Governance practices to ensure the sustainability of the environment.”

The company has won many awards for its portfolio.

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Photo News: LIRS Meets FMCG, Gaming, And Multi-Level Marketing Sector On Deduction Of Withholding Tax On Commission

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Photo News: LIRS Meets FMCG, Gaming and Multi-level Marketing Sector on Deduction of Withholding Tax on Commission

Photo News: LIRS Meets FMCG, Gaming, and Multi-level Marketing Sector on Deduction of Withholding Tax on Commission

Olushola Okunlade Writes

Left-Right: Director, New Growth Areas, Mr. Olujimi Aina, Executive Chairman, LIRS, Mr. Ayodele Subair, Managing Director, O. M Associates, Mr. Olufemi Oguntade during a meeting on Deduction of Withholding Tax on Commission with Stakeholders within the FMCG, Gaming and Multi-level Marketing Sector held at Protea Hotel, Alausa, Ikeja on May 12, 2022.

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