The 10th House of Representative has approved an eight-point Legislative Agenda, a roadmap for its activities in four years (2023-2027).
The approval was given sequel to consideration of the report of the ad-hoc committee on Legislative Agenda chaired by the House Leader, Hon. Julius Ihonvbere at plenary yesterday.
The eight priority areas in the Legislative Agenda are strengthening good governance, improving national security, law reform, economic growth and development, social sector reform and development, inclusion and open parliament, influencing/directing Nigeria’s foreign policy, and climate change and environmental sustainability.
The document highlighted the main objective of the Legislative Agenda, which is to make the 10th House “The People’s House” and improve the lawmaking, oversight and representative functions of the legislature.
Other specific objectives include to bring the House closer to the people and promote citizens’ engagement through the Open National Assembly project; promote good governance, transparency and accountability through legislative measures.
They also include to support the eight-point Agenda of the Executive; strengthen the committee system for effective service delivery in the House of Representatives; and promote smooth legislative-executive relationships for good governance.
Speaker of the House, Hon. Abbas Tajudeen, in the mission statement of the Legislative Agenda said it is intended to streamline the activities of the House and guide the efficient allocation of resources.
“Critically, as the people’s representatives, we recognise that Nigerians and our constituents have a right to know what issues are being addressed and what priorities their elected representatives focus on.
“This transparency enhances public trust and accountability. Accordingly, we have dubbed the 10th House the ‘People’s House,’” he said.
Abbas also expressed the expectation of the House that the Legislative Agenda would “foster meaningful public engagement and encourage citizens and stakeholders to participate in debates, hearings, and consultations related to the identified priorities, making the legislative process more inclusive and democratic.”
“This well-defined legislative agenda with clear priorities is a fundamental tool for the 10th House to function effectively, efficiently, and accountably.
“I present it to members, committees and all Nigerians and look forward to a successful House and urge my colleagues to make this Agenda the core document of the House and ensure that all committees begin to work and meet the expectations of all Nigerians.”
The Legislative Agenda noted that the 10th House had identified the essential elements to provide direction, purpose, and a framework for effective legislative functioning. “They are intended to help guide decision-making, shape the parliament’s identity, and ensure that the House serves the best interests of Nigerians,” the policy document said.
It added that, “This ethical framework will guide our legislative work, inspire and motivate members and stakeholders, align efforts toward common goals and objectives and clarify the purpose and role of the House.”
According to the document, the core values include effectiveness, efficiency, commitment, accountability, accessibility and responsiveness.
The vision of the 10th House reads: “A ‘People’s House’ that is responsive, results-oriented and effective in performing its constitutional manner towards the security and welfare of all Nigerians.”
The mission is: “To promote professionalism and best legislative practices in lawmaking, oversight and representation.”
Giving synopsis of report before consideration at the Committee of the Whole with the Deputy Speaker, Hon. Benjamin Kalu, the Legislative Agenda panel chairman, Ihonvbere said it seeks to provide a guideline for the House to properly function to take care of evolving issues as they may arise.
He said it also seeks to ensure excellent relations between Members in engaging with their constituents and make their work much smoother to carry out.