Nigeria, Benin Republic Seek Stronger Parliamentary Ties
The National Assembly has said it will gladly welcome moves aimed at strengthening parliamentary ties and cooperation between Nigeria and its neighboring West African country, Republic of Benin that will assist the country overcome many of its security and economic challenges.
Director-General, National Institute for Legislative and Democratic Studies (NILDS), Prof. Abubakar O Sulaiman made the call for stronger legislative ties between both countries when he received a high powered delegation of parliamentary officials from the National Assembly of the Republic of Benin in his office in Abuja on Monday.
Welcoming the guests who were on a benchmark visit to Nigeria, the NILDS boss said Nigeria is opened to friendly parliamentary supports from other African countries especially its immediate neighbours like Benin Republic to battle the scourge of terrorism, banditry and kidnapping in the country.
He said such partnership will also be needed in tackling many of Nigeria’s economic challenges.
“In Africa today, we have a lot of challenges ranging from insecurity to economic crisis. We cannot do it all alone without leaning on other countries especially our neighbouring countries. We can achieve this through interactions and through inter-dependency we can move Africa forward.
Sulaiman said Nigeria through the National Institute for Legislative and Democratic Studies (NILDS) has since 2004 provided technical parliamentary support to a number of African countries including the Gambia, Ghana and Sierra Leone, pointing out that with the Institute’s current level of capacity, lawmakers and parliamentary support staff in Benin Republic have a lot to gain from the visit to Nigeria.
The DG noted that both Benin and Nigeria share a lot of historical and cultural affinities in common which he said can be further enhanced deliberately through legislative instruments.
He told his visitors that NILDS has been quite instrumental in providing necessary technical backup to strengthen the legislature in Nigeria and will be willing to share some of its experiences with its counterpart in Benin.
He said the Legislature as the backbone of any democracy requires robust technical assistance from professional Institutes like NILDS to function effectively.
“Without Legislature there is no democracy and if democracy must survive then the legislature must be functional. That is why having an Institute like this is vital
So key to legislation in Nigeria is this Institute. Without the Institute the workings of the parliament will not be a maximum level”.
He however advised that such Parliamentary Institute must be seen as being neutral and apolitical in deeds and in actions.
Earlier, the leader of the delegation and Secretary General (Administration), Benin Republic National Assembly, Mariano Ogoutolou who spoke through an interpreter said the mission to Abuja was to seek for ways for his country to collaborate and tap from the resourcefulness of the Nigerian Parliament.