SPEECH BY THE PRESIDENT AND CHAIRMAN, GOVERNING COUNCIL, (CIPMN),
DR. (MRS). VICTORIA I. OKORONKWOON THE INDUCTION CEREMONY OF THE NEW MEMBERS AND CONFERMENT OF HONORARY FELLOW AWARD ON SOME DISTINGUINSHED NIGERIANS ON THE 10TH JULY 2019
President of the Federal Republic
President MuhammaduBuhari, GCFR
Members of the Governing Council of our Great Institute
Our Honorary Awardees
The Management & Staff of CIPMN
Our invited Guests
Respected Professional Colleagues
Gentlemen of the Press
Ladies and Gentlemen.
I am extremely delighted to welcome everyone to this great occasion. It is one of such privileges to induct yet another set of people into our various membership categories, including the conferment of honorary fellow award on some deserving members of the public through our direct membership registration program. The direct membership registration & induction approach was adopted to enable us kick start the Institute’s membership activities, especially having realised that part of the essence of the Institute is to bring professionals from all works of life under one big umbrella to inject into them the appropriate professional project management tools, skills, techniques and capabilities for effective global competition. This particular window is not a permanent option, because the earnest plan to commence full-blown academic activities very soon is already in progress. So immediately after the commencement of the full academic works, membership enrolment shall be strictly by qualifying professional examinations, which shall run from FOUNDATION STAGE, through INTERMEDIATE STAGE to the FINAL STAGE, depending on the member’s /candidate’s entry qualification point.
However, your admission into the institute through DIRECT REGISTRATION also poses its own task on you. For you TO JUSTIFY YOUR PROFESSIONAL MEMBERSHIP AND REMAIN AFLOAT WITH GLOBAL TRENDS IN THE PROJECT MANAGEMENT PROFESSION, through CIPMN, you shall be taking your mandatory courses programs periodically as required by the Establishment Act.
Our objective in line with the statutory mandate is to strengthen the project managers especially in Nigeria in order to redefine and reposition the mentality of all stakeholders in the entire project management value chain from the attitude of ‘Nigeria factor’ to ‘Global professional factor’. After all, project is project anywhere in the world. The difference lies in the characters involved in its management. No doubt, it will be a daunting task; but because we are already aware of the task, part of the approach to rewrite the history of project management in Nigeria through the CIPMN platform is to ensure that CIPMN certificates and licence gain not just national, but also global recognition and acceptance. This becomes inevitable, since section 14(8) of the Establishment Act has mandated all project management professionals with foreign certification who wish to practice project management in Nigeria to register with CIPMN within 12 months post commencement of this ACT. We will achieve this by effective collaboration with other international project management professional InstituteS and bodies around the world. You can be rest assured that the CIPMN certificate and license will be an asset of the global standard.
A. Currently in collaboration with our Supervising Ministry (Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment) deliberate efforts are been made for CIPMN licence and certification to become prequalification bidding requirement for all contracts at various levels of government in Nigeria. This will help to add impetus to the acceptability and integrity of the activities of CIPMN.
B. We have created zonal Directorates for the six geopolitical zones of Nigeria with their liaison offices located in Lagos, Owerri, Port Harcourt, Kano, Abuja, and Bauchi for (South West, South East, South-South, North West, North Central, and North East) respectively. Out of the six zonal Directorates,two of themwith physical office addresses (Lagos and Port Harcourt) have effectively commenced operation, while the remaining four (4) Directorates will follow suit as time goes on.
C. Furthermore, part of our strategic approach to rewrite the history of project management in Nigeria is for CIPMN to set up its operational/monitoring offices (task force) across the 774 Local Government Areas in Nigeria. To achieve this, we are already seeking sponsorship, partnership and collaboration with some MDA’s considering the huge financial and logistics implications. This will among other things, help to:
(i). Generate reliable data for all projects in Nigeria, track both the on-going projects with their project managers and establish progress reports of such projects in terms of the challenges and the socio economic consequences of completing or abandoning such projects. Under this circumstances the CIPMN as an Institute, and a regulating body can justifiably interface between the project owners, project managers and the project beneficiaries, and of course make appropriate and informed recommendations to the Government for necessary actions.
(ii).Continuously create adequate awareness and sensitize every stakeholder from the grass-root to embrace the mandates and significance of CIPMN.
D. More so, since our National Secretariat, located in FCT- Abuja the Northern part of the Country, is fully functional, we are as well making frantic effort to facilitate the earnest commencement of a full academic activities in fulfilment of the academic mandate of the Institute. To this end we have acquired about 22 plots of land in Arochukwu, Abia State, the Southern part of Nigeria as the proposed site for the Institute’s learning centre. This is to give the Institute a National spread and socio-political balance Before the construction work commences in the nearest future;
– We are exploring and considering other immediate options to kick-start the professional qualifying examination of the Institute in response to the growing demands by the public who are desirous of making careers in project management.
– As part of the deliberate steps being taken we have developed a comprehensive academic syllabus, and packaged in learning modules, for foundation stage, intermediate stage, and the final/Chartered professional qualifying examination stage.
This module is designed for both the online and offline learning programmes.
E. Furthermore, we have engaged the services of professional institute consultants, who are developing a robust administrative and academic structure for the Institute. This particular assignment is already in progress.
F. Most importantly, we have engaged a Legal Consultant, who drafted and despatched a letter to His Excellency, President MuhammaduBuhari GCFR, drawing His Excellency, attention to another version of project management bill passed by the Nation Assembly after His Excellency had already assented to ‘’the Chartered Institute of Project Managers of Nigeria (Establishment) Act, no. 3 of 2018. The legal Consultant having notified His Excellency of this new bill, which has same functions as that of CIPMN, already on His Excellency,’s table for his assent, have further advised His Excellency, President MuhammaduBuhari to decline assent to the said Bill, to avoid duplication and proliferation of project managers/management professional bodies in Nigeria.
G. In a related development, we have through the same legal consultant instituted a Court process against the Corporate Affair Commission in the Federal High Court Abuja, praying the Court to order the Corporate Affairs Commission to:
Firstly, de-register and de-list all existing project management related companies, institutions, bodies, and the likes registered as incorporated trustees (IT) by the Corporate Affair commission.
Secondly, to forthwith desist from and stop further registration of any related companies, institutions, bodies and entities incorporated trustees (IT) whose article and memorandum of Association is in resemblance or similar to the mandates of the Chartered Institute of Project Managers of Nigeria. Just to mention a few.
THE INDUCTEES & HONORARY FELLOW AWARDEES
As we inducted you into this noble professional training and regulatory body (CIPMN), we charge you to focus more on the attendant challenges ahead rather than the benefits. The primary idea behind your membership is to solve project related problems andbecome ‘’world-class’’ project managers. This implies that any project having your official CIPMN licensed and seal must be executed in line with global best practice. You are solely responsible for the success or failure of any project under your supervision. You cannot pass the bulk or shift the blame any more to either the project owner or other professionals under your supervision. Indeed, as the project manager, every other professional involved in your project is part of the human resources you require for successful execution of the projects. Therefore, both the ‘’praise and the blame stop at your desk.
Your admission into a highly professional body like CIPMN is not for the fun of it. In essence, it is a crucial call to duty. The Institute is not only determined, but have resolved to rigorously implement and enforce every clause in the Establishment Act in line with its statutory mandate; most especially by instilling discipline in her members to maintain professional ethics and standards at all times. Any project manager in Nigeria who tend to practice or behave otherwise will incur the wrath of the law.
Now, the charge we gave your predecessors on the 18th December 2018, the same charge we give to you today. Be the image-maker, the ambassadors, the faces and broadcasters of the good news of our Institute. Insist on our code of conduct, project our “slogan”, stand out among your contemporaries, resist every unprofessional temptation or compromise, and above all, allow the spirit of “team spirit” remain our melting point. With this there is no limit on far you will go in your quest for professional excellence.
We urge you all to be passionate about this new trend. Develop the culture of rejecting to execute projects, which are likely to fail from its conceptions. As professionals, you can easily identify such projects. Thus accepting such offers could be dangerous, inimical and a dent on the integrity of project management profession in Nigeria in general and CIPMN members in particular. Therefore, imbibe the spirit of offering professional advice to your clients, and avoid sharp practices that would eventually result in executing poor quality (substandard) projects by complying wholly with the project plan approval no matter the compelling circumstance, to forestall unwarranted andpreventable havocs. That is why you are certified as professional project managers, which is the hallmark of the theme for today’s event ‘’The Uncompromising Project Manager – A Catalyst for Rapid Socio-Economic Development’’.
The powers to turn around, the fortune and destiny of Nigeria to the admiration of her contemporaries in the comity of nations are entrenched in the CIPMN Act, and by implication in the hands of the CIPMN members. The seriousness you attached to this ‘’golden-opportunity’’, shall reveal the extent of your commitment, and patriotism in the new Nigeria agenda through the chartered Institute of project Managers of Nigeria.
However, we acknowledge the influence of our political practices on almost all our psychological and socio-economic decisions. We recognised that we are practicing particularly in Nigeria environment. We likewise recognised that therewould be no positive change in Nigeria if both project managers and non-project managers alike are unwilling to advance the cause of positive change. Therefore, as professional project managers we must stay true to defend the rare trust reposed on us. We must stay true to the commonalities we share. We must stay true to the mandates of this Institute. We must stay true to our passion for professionalism. We must stay true in upholding the ethics and tenant of our much-cherished standards. We must stay true because we have ‘’been found worthy’’ to salvage, sanitise, and professionalise the entire segments of project management. We must, as a matter of responsibility reciprocate this gesture by our determination, resilience, selflessness, ethical conduct, sense of professionalism, strict respect and adherence to standards, healthy relationship, above all by complementing rather than competing with one another. That way posterity will exonerate us from the misdeeds and misgivings of our generation.
Let me remind you today that, the conception and birth of CIPMN, the journey that started more than fourteen (14) years ago waspropelled by my strong desire to add real value to the society through project management. Taking time to observe the culture of project handlers in most advanced countries in Europe, America and the rest of the western world; how their projects are initiated and completed within the work schedule without abandonment, it dawned on me that, against all odds, with share determination, Nigeria and Nigerians can take a clue from them. This necessitated the quest for statutory project management professional bodies in order to eradicate the activities of quacks, and establish a proper and legitimate position of the project manager as a standard portfolio in the project management process.
THE GOVERNMENT AND OTHER STAKEHOLDERS.
The pertinent and the critical roles of the various governments and other stakeholders if we must succeed cannot be over-emphasised. On the strength of this, I want to passionately seek the understanding and cooperation of the government at all levels and, other major stakeholders in ‘’the entire project management value chain’’ to join force with CIPMN in our efforts to rejig, reposition and enhance the significance of the project managers, and project management practice in Nigeria. We recognize your invaluable and critical roles, which we cannot undermine. We therefore implore the federal government, state government & the private sector players to give the CIPMN licence and certificate the due recognition it deserves in the overall project management equation by making them a mandatory prequalification requirement for all contracts bidding for ANY contract in Nigeria.. This indeed will be a boost.
In conclusion, it is my considered opinion that once we get project management value chain right, we will definitely get all other things right, not only in Nigeria but the world at large. This is why we, the projects managers should “leave no stone unturned” in our collective quest for nothing less than absolute professionalism in this noble profession.
Once again, you are welcome into the fold of ‘’World–class project managers’’.
God bless you all.