From Juliana Taiwo-Obalonye, Abuja
The Federal Government has launched the National Diaspora Policy that will effectively promote and harness the resources and capacity of Nigerians in the Diaspora for the growth and development of Nigeria.
The Minister of State, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Zubairu Dada who launched the Policy at the Third Summit of the States Diaspora Focal Point Officers and Standing Committee on Diaspora Matters, explained that the National Diaspora Policy will engage, enable and empower Nigerians in the Diaspora as Change Agents for the development of Nigeria.
She said that the Federal Executive Council, FEC adopted, ratified and approved the National Diaspora Policy, as a Legal framework based on the 1999 Constitution of Nigeria (as amended) which provides for the human rights of all Nigerians, dual citizenship and allows for Nigerians to enjoy all the benefits of citizenship.
Also, the duo of the Deputy Chairman, Senate Committee on Diaspora, Civil Societies and NGOs, Senator Ibrahim Oloriegbe, represented by Senator Abba Moro and the Chairman House Committee on Diaspora Affairs, Hon. Tolulope Akande-Sadipe, expressed their total support and commitment to rolling out pro-diaspora legislations that will constructively engage Nigerians in the Diaspora for sustainable National development.
The lawmakers who were Special Guests of Honour also commended NIDCOM for the Launch of the National Diaspora Policy as well as holding the Third Summit of States Diaspora Focal Point Officers and Standing Committee on Diaspora.
Earlier, the Chairman/CEO, Nigerians in Diaspora Commission, Abike Dabiri-Erewa noted the financial and technical support of the European Union and the International Organisation for Migration for assisting in the development of the National Diaspora Policy and hosting of third Summit of States Diaspora Focal Point Officers and Standing Committee on Diaspora.
She assured that the Commission will ensure that an enabling environment is provided for exchange of ideas to encourage synergies and collaboration among State Diaspora Focal Point Officers, to promote policy consistency and coherence, with an overall objective of harnessing the potentials of Nigerian Diaspora for National Development.
Dabiri-Erewa who was represented by the Secretary to the Commission Engr. Dr Sule Yakubu Bassi said that “it is important to inform on the progress made following the second summit” stating that three additional states have appointed their SDFPOs rounding up the total number of Officers to 31.
He added that two new officers will join the summit, summing up the States Diaspora Focal Point Officers to 33.
The three-day third Summit of States Diaspora Focal Point Officers(SDFPOs) and the Standing Committee on Diaspora Matters, has as its theme: “Strengthening Diaspora Engagement Through States Diaspora Focal Point Officers, according to a statement by Gabriel Odu, of the Media, Public Relations and Protocols Unit, NIDCOM.