…As NAN MD Commends Successes Recorded at NEPAD.

Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), Mr Bayo Onanuga has commended the programmes and projects of NEPAD Nigeria for seeking to develop all sectors of the nation’s economy, while promising to collaborate with the body to showcase its many activities to the world using the platform of his Agency.

Mr. Onanuga spoke in his office in Abuja,Friday, when the National Coordinator and Chief Executive Officer,NEPAD Nigeria, Hon. Princess Gloria Akobundu, visited the news Agency to seek media support and collaboration for the oncoming NEPAD Nigeria Good Governance Tour across the country, which seeks to monitor the implementation of the National Programme of Action of the last Peer Review of Nigeria and set in motion preparations for the next one.

In his words, the NAN MD said: “Let me commend your efforts at NEPAD since your appointment for all that you are doing to put life back into a body which is, obviously, not much in the news. We have granted all your requests and will make available to you, Madam, the services of 502 reporters scattered across this country and beyond, who are all working for NAN. So, we shall join you to make real the maxim, which says ‘if you do not blow your trumpet, no one will do that for you’ “.

Earlier, while informing her host of the reason for her visit, Princess Akobundu said there was need to create awareness on what NEPAD Nigeria was doing. This, she said, was to make Nigerians understand how they could take advantage of the programmes and projects of NEPAD to better their lot.

Emphasising that the NEPAD mandate encompasses such areas as Sports, Education, Women and Youth Empowerment, Energy, Agriculture as well as other aspects of human development, the NEPAD Nigeria CEO said all that she had sought to do since she assumed office was to reposition NEPAD Nigeria through strategic partnerships with sister Agencies, the Ministries and Departments, including the Nigeria Police, the Army as well as members of the Civil Society Organisations and Institutions.

While stressing that media and information-dissemination were central to government as much as government was also central to them, Princess Akobundu said her intention was to seek out all potential media partners for collaboration and to achieve synergy in areas of their common focus. This, she said, would achieve better sensitisation and the corresponding feedback for NEPAD programmes and other activities.

She said: “If we synergise in pursuit of a common goal, the result is always better than an individual effort. All that I have been trying to do is to see how our people at the grassroots and elsewhere can all gain something from NEPAD. This is the goal of my 4-R Agenda. Countries of the world are diversifying their earnings and resource bases in Energy, Power, Agriculture and in other areas; Nigeria cannot afford not to do the same .In spite of leading in Africa, Nigeria has failed to maximise gains from NEPAD, which usually come from such Development Partners like UNECA, UNDP, ADB, Mo Ibrahim Foundation and the rest. Others are using these funds to build Solar City, like the Sustainable Energy for All, the Energy City, the Agro Green Hub and the Agro Industrial Park and others, which have ensured food security and provided employment opportunities elsewhere .But we are no following; basically due to poor awareness to the people who can access these funds through us at NEPAD here. We must endeavour to inform our people of all of these.”

Ending, the NEPAD Nigeria CEO again re-iterated her request to be availed of one or two NAN reporters as part of her entourage in her Good Governance Tour. It was agreed that a Joint Committee would be set-up by NEPAD NIGERIA and the News Agency of Nigeria to perfect the basis of the collaboration and partnership between the two Agencies.


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