By Ruth Oketunde
The Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Mr Boss Mustapha, says volunteerism is a critical tool for socio-economic development.
Mustapha made the remark on Thursday in Abuja at a workshop organised by the Nigerian National Volunteer Service on “Volunteerism and Development’’ for officials of Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs).
The SGF was represented by Mr Andrew Adejo, the Permanent Secretary, Political and Economic Affairs Office, Office of the Secretary to Government of the Federation (OSGF).
Mustapha noted that volunteering had been adopted by developed countries due to its numerous benefits.
He added that the workshop was organised for officials of MDAs that could easily be mobilised to contribute their services on voluntary basis to the development of the country.
“However, there is the need to reposition volunteerism, promote and build necessary capacities to effectively handle volunteerism so as to contribute to the successful implementation of both national and international development goals.
“It is therefore, important to point out and emphasise the crucial role of stakeholders which is expected and urgently required to assist government in this important task of promoting and harnessing the potential of volunteerism for development.
“The MDAs will always play a vital role in the recruitment and redeployment of volunteers for services in the various areas of the economy toward development.
“The volunteers’ efforts will greatly be of resourcefulness in critical areas such as Education, Health, Skills Circulation, Environment, Agriculture, Humanitarian, Science/Technology, Emergency, Migration, Investment, Sports, Power, Resource Missions, Traffic Management, Orderliness and Discipline, amongst others,’’ Mustapha said.
Mrs Olusola Dada, Director, Nigerian National Volunteer Service, said that President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration had recognised volunteerism as a veritable instrument to complement and fast-track socio-economic development, especially in the rural communities.
According to her, to underscore the importance of volunteering, the Federal Government created the Nigerian National Volunteer Service Department as an institutional framework to coordinate volunteering efforts of Nigerians toward development.
Dada called on Nigerians to be passionate about volunteering and helping humanity wherever they found themselves. (NAN)