The Conference of Speakers of State Legislatures of Nigeria has commenced a one-week retreat in the cities of Toronto and Ottawa, Canada, to tap from their wealth of experience in governance and law-making processes.
The Nation reports the retreat will allow the Speakers to interface with top Canadian government officials and lawmakers.
Speaking during the opening ceremony in Ottawa, Chairman of the Conference who doubles as Bauchi Speaker, Hon. Abubakar Suleiman, said that the one-week training is carefully put together for members to look into practices from other nations for good governance.
A statement by the spokesperson of Suleiman, Abdul Burra, explained that the choice of Canada for the retreat is strategic, adding that it’s one of the most developed countries in the world worthy of learning from, especially the fact that it ranks high in government transparency, civil liberties, among others.
“While Canada is a parliamentary democracy and a constitutional monarchy in the Westminster tradition, Nigeria adopts a presidential system fashioned after that of the United States.
“Both Canada and Nigeria adopt a federal system of government largely due to our multicultural characteristics and diverse ethnic backgrounds. And both nations’ Constitutions provide for subnational legislatures. We acknowledge that the roles played by the provincial legislatures in Canada at the subnational level towards the growth and development of the Country cannot be overemphasized.
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“Given this, our mission in Canada is simple and clear. We are set out for robust engagements with the hosts with a view to learning practices and ideals that will ultimately reposition our country on the right trajectory to greatness through subnational legislative activities,” he said.
While hoping that the engagement is going to be impactful, Abubakar commended the Institute on Governance, Global Affairs Canada, Nigerian High Commission, the University of Ottawa, and other relevant institutions and partners for making the program a reality.
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau expressed his country’s readiness and commitment to further deepen the bilateral relationship between Canada and Nigeria.
He also urged the visiting Parliamentarians to interact and explore the rich culture that makes the Canadian people unique.