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Buhari appoints Olawuyi, 14 others into NEITI board

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Damilola S. Olawuyi

President Muhammadu Buhari has appointed the Deputy Vice-Chancellor of Afe Babalola University (ABUAD), Prof. Damilola Olawuyi and 14 others as members of the newly constituted governing board of the Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI). 
 
The 15-member board was inaugurated in Abuja by President Buhari, who was represented by Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Boss Mustapha.
 
The board, otherwise known as the National Stakeholders Working Group is responsible for the formulation of policies, programmes and strategies for promoting transparency, accountability and good governance in the petroleum and mining sectors.
 
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Speaking at the inauguration ceremony, Buhari charged the board to preserve the noble virtues for which NEITI is known and be non-partisan.
 
“NEITI is not just a local agency of government, but part of an international organisation. Hence it must be seen to comply with the principles of the international EITI.
 
“Your mandate as the board of this organisation is to ensure effective Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) implementation in Nigeria by providing policy and strategic direction, guidance, monitoring and oversight to the EITI process in Nigeria,” the President said.
 
The new governing board is under the chairmanship of Olusegun Adekunle, former Permanent Secretary, general services in the office of the SGF, while Ogbonnaya Orji, Executive Secretary of NEITI, serves as the board’s secretary.
 
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Other members of the board are Bashir Bature Gafai (North-West), Iliya Gashinbaki (North-East), Godwin Akor Ogwuche (North-Central), Nze Joe Ibeh (South-East), Awowo Christian (South-South) and Prof. Damilola Olawuyi, SAN (South-West).
 
Speaking on his appointment, Prof. Olawuyi, who is also a member of the African Union’s working group on Extractive Industries, Environment and Human Rights Violations in Africa, said: “It is an absolute privilege and honour to have been appointed to serve on this important board.

“If developed in an open, transparent and accountable manner, petroleum and mining sectors have enormous potential to unlock economic prosperity and sustainable development in Nigeria. I look forward to contributing my best to advance the important work that NEITI is doing to promote transparency, accountability, and good governance in these key economic sectors. I thank Mr President for the confidence reposed in us and we shall not let the nation down.”   
 
The chairman and members have four-year tenure on a part-time basis, while the Executive Secretary has a five-year tenure and is on a full-time appointment.

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