Participants at the two-day Executive/Legislative retreat presided over by President Muhammadu Buhari have called on the officials of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) to rein in its members to enable it resolve internal crises.
In a 10-point communique read by the Minister of Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Mr Mohammed Musa Bello at the end of the retreat held at the Banquet Hall of the Presidential Villa in Abuja on Tuesday, the participants also advocated for respect for the leadership of the party by its members.
“The ruling political party should be encouraged to take ownership of its members to be able to reconcile them whenever conflict arises, and, members in both arms of government should show regard for the party and its leadership,” the minister said.
The minister said participants also called for a concrete understanding and working knowledge between the two arms of government, stressing that an effective confidence building measure should be put in place in the governance process to ensure mutual respect and cordial relationship between the executive and legislature.
The minister said participants also recommended the creation of an effective conflict management and resolution mechanism in resolving areas of disagreement between the executive and legislature in the overall national interest.
The minister said participants also also recommended that there should be modalities for better access, interfacing and engagement between the leaderships of the two arms of government, National Assembly committees and Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs).
“There should be regular pre-budget consultations between the Executive and Legislature particularly between the MDAs and NASS Committees, Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning and the appropriate Committee in NASS.
“There is need for an effective communication and collaborative engagement to enhance and strengthen the relationship between the arms of government for the benefit of Nigerians.
“The relationship should not be adversarial but complementary, thus, more interpersonal and informal relationship between heads of MDAs and NASS members should be encouraged.
“Operators in the arms of government should act with moderation and limit their sense of entitlement by placing public interest over and above personal and parochial interest.
“The Presidency should strengthen the capacity of the Executive Liaison Offices in the National Assembly.
“There is need for an organic budget law which will optimize the budgetary process so as to deliver effective and efficient service to the citizens,” he said.
The minister said participants also constituted a Joint Technical Committee, whose membership would be announced later, to align the government’s nine-point priority agenda with the legislative agenda of the Senate and House of Representatives to increase synergy, improve harmony and coordination of government policies and programmes.
He said the committee would also articulate and synthesize the outcome of the retreat and make recommendations to the President and the leadership of the National Assembly for necessary actions, and provide inputs and recommendations to the Tripartite Committee Chaired by the Vice President for consideration and necessary action.