The Chairman of the Independent Corrupt Practices Commission, (ICPC), Barr. Ekpo Nta, stood out among the 256 serving and retired staff of the Niger Delta Development Commission, (NDDC), who were honoured with long service awards by the interventionist agency at the Hotel Presidential, Port Harcourt on Monday. Also, 66 NDDC staff were given awards for excellence for distinguishing themselves in their various departments.
The NDDC Managing Director, Sir (Barr) Bassey Dan-Abia, explained that the essence of the awards was to build staff confidence for career progression, motivate them and promote excellence through healthy competition for greater service delivery.
He stated that the mandate of the NDDC would not be realized without a dynamic, virile and productive workforce, and the commission resolved to lay emphasis on human capital development and reward diligent service and excellence. “At my maiden meeting with staff of the commission last year, I reiterated Board and Management commitment to prioritize staff welfare in view of the fact that human capital management is the single most important resource among the factors of service delivery,” he said.
According to the NDDC boss, long service award was an acknowledgment of the dignity of labour. “It is management’s way of appreciating and reciprocating staff commitment, dedication and perseverance in the discharge of their duties for the success of the commission in actualizing its mandate.”
Sir Dan-Abia said that the commission had produced some outstanding staff among whom were the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Dr. Goodluck Jonathan, the ICPC chairman, and the INEC Resident Electoral Commissioner for Delta State, Mrs. Gescila Khan. “They are indeed our goodwill ambassadors and we are proud of them.” He called on the staff to emulate the commitment to exemplary service of the retired staff.
The MD highlighted some of the actions taken by the current Board and Management to improve staff welfare which included approval of human capital development in various reputable institutions to build staff capacity; endorsement of a new negotiated staff terms and conditions of service, as well as placing high premium on staff healthcare.
The ICPC Chairman, Ekpo Nta, who was a director with the Oil Mineral Producing Areas Development Commission (OMPADEC) before it became the NDDC, thanked the commission for recognizing the contributions of staff, both serving and retired. He said: “If we don’t pay attention to our past, it will mar our present and our future.”
He appealed to NDDC staff to stay clean and upright in their service to the commission, pointing out that the culture of institutional integrity, transparency and accountability in any organization begins with the individual. He advised them to put in their best always so as to be able to retire from the NDDC with their heads held high.
He said that the NDDC was one of the organizations that usually attract many petitions from the public, even though most of them turn out to be malicious and frivolous. He, therefore, promised to assist the staff of the commission to stay out of trouble and perform their duties without blemish.
Speaking on behalf of the award recipients, Mr. Dimkpa Goodhope, thanked the Board and Management of NDDC for finding it expedient to honour the staff for Long Service and Excellence. He said that the awards would motivate other staff members and challenge them to strive to be recognized too.