By Florence Ugbem
The Centre for Innovation in Procurement, Environmental and Social Standards (CIPESS), Joseph Sarwuan Tarka University, Makurdi (JOSTUM), recently held a valedictory session for participants for the Advanced Certificate Courses (Track B) in the areas of Procurement, Environmental and Social Standards.
Speaking during the valedictory session held at the Staff Development Centre, Makurdi, the Centre Leader and Director, CIPESS, Prof. Lami Nnamonu admonished the participants to be true drivers of change, maintain the knowledge received and share the experience with their fellow participants.
The Centre leader who was represented by the Deputy Centre Leader of Environmental Standards, Prof. Rufus Sha’Ato congratulated the participants for their resilience and urged them to see the need to acquire a bachelor’s degree in any of the courses. She thanked the facilitators for making the programme a success.
“Today as you exit from this training, we are looking forward to you passing the knowledge to the people around you”, she said.
In his presentation titled, “Drivers of Change”, Prof. S. A. Shomkegh said for Nigeria to survive, there is the need to drive change in the areas of procurement, environment and social standards, as he urged participants to be agents of change and go out there and promote best practices.
He noted that corruption and mismanagement of public funds were affecting every area of the nation and urged them to promote integrity, and truthfulness in the delivery and discharge of their duties.
Prof. Shomkegh advised them to practice all they have been taught in their various standards wherever they find themselves, adding that the programme was commissioning them as the messiah needed to bring change in the environment.
In his remarks, the Vice Chancellor,Prof. Isaac Itodo, who was represented by the Deputy Vice-Chancellor Administration, Prof. Comfort Tuleun thanked the facilitators for taking time to research and impact knowledge, while admonishing the participants to make positive changes that others can learn from them.
The deputy class governor of Environmental Standards, Ijeoma Ogu expressed joy over the insightful knowledge she has gained in standards and procedures in the last three weeks.
Paul Otumala from the Social Standards course noted that the course was beyond his expectations and he has learnt gender matters, compensation, land acquisition and settlement matters and more and thanked the organizers, CIPESS for imparting knowledge into them.
A participant of Procurement Standards, who is a staff of SUBEB, Hon. Solomon Kwasegh maintained that the civil service is the backbone of government and government depends on it to carry out projects, adding that when the principles of procurement are put into practice, it will eliminate loopholes in which money is being diverted. He stressed that, if the knowledge gained in the last three weeks is not applied, then they are not helping the government and they have failed the people and the society at large.
The Centre for Innovation in Procurement, Environmental and Social Standard (CIPESS) is funded by the World Bank for five years under the Sustainable Procurement, Environmental and Social Standards Enhancement (SPESSE) project which is aimed at enhancing sustainable human capacity development in Procurement, Environmental and Social Standards in public and private sectors in Nigeria and the West African sub-region.