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Nigeria to host forum on regional human capital development strategy

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Determined to significantly improve the human development indices in West Africa, the National Economic Council (NEC) chaired by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo is hosting an international forum to launch the Integrated Regional Human Capital Development Strategy.

The conference scheduled for Abuja on Thursday, June 23, 2022, will have in attendance leaders in the public and private sectors across the ECOWAS sub-region, reviewing strategies on human capital development, while the launch of the integrated strategy document will be the high point of the event.

Other partners participating in the forum include the UK’s Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office; the World Bank; Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and Aliko Dangote Foundation, among others.

Nigeria’s HCD programme was launched in March 2018 by the National Economic Council (NEC). It conceptualized the HCD programme with the realization that human capital development plays a critical role in addressing poverty and ensures participatory and sustainable economic growth.

The goal of the National HCD Vision – which was launched at an extended meeting of NEC focused on the Human Capital Development in December 2018 – is for “Healthy, Educated and Productive Nigerians by the Year 2030”, with targets across three thematic areas; namely Health and Nutrition, Education and Labour Force Participation.

Ahead of Thursday’s forum on Integrated Regional Human Capital Development Strategy, Osinbajo has urged improved cooperation among West African countries to address the issues of healthcare access, and out-of-school children among other human development indices.

The Vice President stated this on Wednesday when he received the Prime Minister of Guinea-Bissau, Nuno Gomes Nabiam, on a courtesy visit to the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

The Prime Minister is visiting Nigeria to attend a meeting on ECOWAS Integrated Regional Human Capital Development.

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Thanking Nabiam for honouring the invitation to attend the conference, the Vice President said “the Human Capital Development meeting is very important, it is an opportunity to share experiences and help each other.”

Osinbajo noted that Nigeria’s “National Economic Council (NEC) has done a lot of work on Human Capital Development, focusing on various challenges including questions around out of school and healthcare access.”

The Vice President however acknowledged that the indices show that a lot more work still needed to be done.

Osinbajo commended President Umaro Sissoco Embalo of Guinea Bissau for his strong support for Nigeria, describing him as a very good friend of the country and President Muhammadu Buhari.

The Vice President noted that Guinea Bissau and President Embalo have always supported Nigeria internationally. He congratulated the country for recently warding off a coup détat and wished it well in all its endeavour.

On his part, the Prime Minister extolled the leadership qualities of President Muhammadu Buhari and Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, stating that “what the President of Nigeria and Vice President are doing inspires us too.”

He extended the greetings and message of President Embalo noting that the President of Guinea Bissau and himself will always work to improve relations between both countries.”

The Prime Minister will also speak at the conference tomorrow.

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