‘Representation On NEITI Board Not Exclusive Right Of Any CSO’


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By Sunday Etuka, Abuja 

The Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI), has clarified that the representation on the Nigeria Multi-Stakeholder Group (MSG) is not the exclusive preserve or right of any Civil Society Organisation (CSO).

The Nigeria Multi-Stakeholder Group (MSG), also known as the National Stakeholders Working Group (NSWG), serves as the board of the Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI).

EITI’s reaction was in response to some inquiries made on whether any civil society organisation/coalition has the exclusive rights to sit on the NEITI-NSWG (Board).

This follows an going plan of the Federal Government of Nigeria to reconstitute the Board as promised by the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Senator George Akume when the EITI delegation visited Nigeria in January this year.

In a letter addressed to the NEITI Executive Secretary, Dr. Orji Ogbonna Orji, by the Regional Director- Anglophone and Lusophone Africa, Gilbert Makore, the global body clarified the process of constituting the MSG, particularly for the civil society constituency.

It explained that “the objective of Requirement 1.4 of the EITI Standard is to ensure that there is an independent MSG that can exercise active and meaningful oversight of all aspects of EITI implementation in a way that balances the interests of the three main constituencies.

“A key precondition to meeting this objective is that the MSG group must include adequate representation of key stakeholders appointed on the basis of open, fair and transparent constituency procedures; make decisions in an inclusive manner; and report to wider constituencies.

“Requirement 1.4 a)ii) notes that each stakeholder group has the right to appoint its own representatives, considering diverse representation and gender balance. The nomination process must be independent and free from coercion. Civil society groups involved in the EITI as members of the multi-stakeholder group must be independent of government and/or companies, both operationally and in policy terms.

“The EITI Standard and procedures relating to constituting the MSG and nominations for each constituency do not prescribe that any organisation should be represented on the MSG. It is expected that the nomination process to the NSWG be open for all interested representatives working on extractives in Nigeria.

“The EITI International Secretariat can provide support to this process as needed, including providing clarifications, observing the process and sharing examples from other countries”, he assured.

EITI is a global standard for the good governance of oil, gas and mineral resources, with focus on addressing key governance issues in the Extractive Sectors across countries.


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