SGF tasks Cabinet Office on policy coordination

Mr Boss Mustapha, the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF)

Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Boss Mustapha, has urged the Cabinet Affairs Office (CAO) in the Office of the SGF to facilitate policy coordination among the tiers of government.

Mustapha made the call on Thursday in Abuja at the maiden meeting of Permanent Secretaries and Heads of CAOs at federal and state levels.

He said that the call was to ensure that the executive councils, both at state and federal levels, were provided with the most effective and efficient policy options to move Nigeria forward.

According to him, for the federal and state government to turn things around, the CAOs must support the government’s core business of formulating, implementing, tracking and accounting for policies and programme.

He stressed the urgent need to repositioning the CAOs as the policy development and management centres of government at all levels.

“Let me reiterate that policy making and management are the most sensitive and critical function of government at all levels.

“This requires core competences and capability from CAOs, saddled with the responsibilities of managing policy making and tracking process.

“Empirical evidence suggests that the development of any country largely depends on the policy options the government chooses and implements.

“Sound policy options bring about good public policies and effective service delivery where there is the political will to follow through to implementation,” he said.

The SGF said that the theme of the meeting, “Repositioning the Cabinet Affairs Offices for Effective Service Delivery” was apt and timely.

He said it was also consistent with the global approach to ensuring effective coordination of policies, programme and projects at the national and sub-national levels.

Mr Babatunde Lawal, the Permanent Secretary, CAO in the Office of the SGF, said the meeting was organised to build synergy among CAOs at the federal and state levels.

He said that the idea was to discuss and agree on a veritable framework for strengthening the capacity of CAOs in executing their mandates.

According to him, the meeting will also serve as a platform to promote a shared understanding of the role of government policies, programme and projects across the tiers of government.

“The CAOs across the federation have the responsibility of providing administrative and technical support to statutory councils chaired by the president or governors and the committees that stemmed from these councils.

“We must note that our role is not merely to provide administrative support for these councils.

“We must also act as policy advisors to councils as well as help define and deliver on the government objectives,” he said.