Speech by the President of the Nigerian Society of Engineers, at the Annual Public Lecture of NSE Gombe Branch on Tuesday,
April 25, 2017
Distinguished Ladies and Gentlemen,
I am elated to witness your 2017 annual public lecture.
Gombe Branch has a long tradition of engagement in very exciting knowledge enriching programmes and discourses that has overtime attracted the attention of policy makers and other stakeholders. The topic for discussion here today, “Exploring Nigeria’s Economic Potentials for Growth and Development: The Role of Engineers in the Emerging Economy” is in line with the tone of the moment.
As pacesetters, we must sustain this kind of engagements and also continually monitor policies and programs affecting critical sectors of the nation’s economy, for the purpose of engineering input and liaising with relevant stakeholders from public and private sectors to ensure coordinated action for our country’s sustainable development.
The Nigerian Society of Engineers as a professional body has come a long way, we have remained firm and committed to our ideals. Our Society has been the hallmark of professional development of its Members as well as a tool for the technological advancement of our country and we take pride in our focus on the promotion of engineering education, research and practice.
This is the sure way for us to maintain and enhance the professional capability of our members so as to better equip them to fulfil the needs of the profession for the good of our nation and to excel at the international arena.
Distinguished colleagues, our Branches and Divisions are the platform through which we achieve our goals, and it is credit to all of us as they have continued to increase in number.
In recognition of the vital role of the Branch and its members to the speedy growth of the Society, I expect the Chairman with the entire EXCO to work hard by linking up with our members who are no longer actively involved in activities. The Branch leadership should also encourage members to meet their financial obligation by paying their dues promptly, this will go a long way to help the national Secretariat execute its activities at all times.
We are currently at the forefront of advocacy for our government to uphold the concept of Nigerian Content Development in all sectors.
I am aware of your efforts in the direction of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), therefore, there is the need to keep the flag flying since this is one unique platform we could effectively reach out to the grass roots.
Ladies and gentlemen, top on my agenda is to step up our synergy with political leaders and players in the economic sectors. As part of the effort, on Tuesday, July 12, 2016, I engaged our colleagues elected into the National Assembly and a Governor. An agreement was reached for a meeting on the third Wednesday of every month.
So far, we have effectively utilized the platform for discussions on how to promote engineering and the interest of Nigerian Engineers, particularly where legislative backing would be required.
I wish to also bring to your notice that we are determined to tackle the issues of our members’ welfare frontally. We have initiated discussions with the federal government with a view to ensure our teeming members benefit from its latest social net programme, especially on the planned employment of the 500, 000 graduates.
We are in contact with the Office of the Secretary to Government of the Federation (OSGF), the Honourable Minister of Labour, the Office of the Vice President, and the House Committee on Poverty Alleviation. I am glad to intimate you also that these offices are positively disposed to NSE.
Therefore, I expect that you will also seize the opportunity at the State level and forge a healthy working relationship with government and the relevant stakeholders essentially to promote good governance and the interest of our colleagues.
We are currently at the forefront of advocacy for our government to uphold the concept of Nigerian Content Development in all sectors. The Nigerian Content Act, as it exists, should be enforced absolutely at all times as far as utilization of Nigerian human, material resources and services are concerned. I wish to call on you to always encapsulate this very laudable Act implementation in discourses at every fora for emphasis in order to compel the buy-in of our target audience.
I thank you for your attention and wish you fruitful deliberations.
Engr. Otis Anyaeji, FNSE, FAEng