Nigerians Have Low Trust In Government – Says Abbas
Speaker of the House of Representatives, Rt. Hon. Abbas Tajudeen has observed a huge trust deficit between citizens and governments of African countries, and called for deliberate efforts to increase public trust in the governments.
Abbas made the call in his opening address at a session he chaired at the third plenary session of the ongoing 18th Commonwealth Speakers’ and Presiding Officers’ Conference (CSCOP) in Yaoundé, Cameroon, with the theme: ‘African Parliaments and the Agenda 2063.’
The speaker presided over the session on ‘Securing Public Trust: The Role of Parliaments in Strengthening Openness, Transparency and Accountability.’
He said the topic could not have come at a better time than now when there is a huge trust deficit between citizens and government which contributes a lot to the much-talked-about democratic backsliding.
“To reverse this trend requires public trust in governmental institutions. The people we represent, our constituents, rely on us to uphold the principles of democracy, to safeguard their interests, and to promote their welfare.
“Thus, openness, transparency and accountability are not mere buzzwords but essential pillars upon which we can build a resilient democracy that serves the needs and aspirations of our people,” Abbas said.
The Speaker according to a statement by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Musa Krishi, said the conference highlights Africa’s ambitious aspiration and goals, captured in the concepts of “a prosperous Africa based on inclusive Growth and sustainable development.”
He noted that the trust of the public is the foundation upon which the legislatures stand, and it is the duty of legislators to protect and nurture this trust through their actions and commitments.
Abbas stressed that the people they represent have entrusted them with the responsibility of ensuring that the government remains accountable to them.
“Together, we can forge a path towards greater openness, transparency, and accountability, strengthening the bonds of trust between our citizens and their elected representatives.
“I have every confidence that the discussions we will engage in today will be insightful, robust, thought-provoking, and impactful. Let us seize this opportunity to learn from one another, to share our experiences, and to chart a course that will inspire confidence and empower our people,” he added.