The ascension of Engr Ahmed Kadi Amshi to the leadership of the National Assembly Service Commission NASC in February 2020, was the best thing that had happened in recent times.
With his appointment in February 2020, he kicked the ground running despite confronted with series of impossibilities in the commission in all areas, but with determination, he had stabilised the once crises ridden establishment ranging from succession to welfare packages of staffers, promotions, appointment and other issues that was bedevilling the commission.
Starting on a familiar terrain , but with higher responsibility, Kadi acquainted himself with the intricacies on the job, having served as Chief of Staff to the current Senate President, Dr Ahmad Ibrahim Lawan, while serving as Senate leader and principal officer of the Senate between 2017-2019 in the 8th Senate.
With large resume from the Yobe state civil service and the organised private sectors, as well as private organisations, Kadi needed ample time to ressolve major contending problems of the commission.
With huge adminstrative responsibility of managing the affairs of the commission, National Assembly staffers which included the legislative aides to 109 senators and 360 members of the House of Representatives, he needed extra efforts to drive the all important commission to achieve results.
Getting attention of civil servants will be creating an enabling environment and welfare packages, as well as addressing their major and statutory entitlements that included salaries and allowances overtime.
For National Assembly Service Commission, it was characterised with so many carry overs of pending issues, as he quickly reorganized the commission by streamlining succession crises that hinged on conditions of service , promotion, appointments, and remunerations including discipline and reprimanded.
Kadi cleared promotion arears, salary arears and recently paid minimum wage, other allowances to the two main organs of workforce in the commission consisting of Parliamentary Staff Association of Nigeria PASAN and National Assembly Legislative Aides Forum NASSLAF, whose demands had lingered since the beginning of the 9th Assembly coinciding with when he assumed duty.
Because of the crucial and complimentary efforts of the commission’s staff both at the National Assembly particularly in the running of the day to day affairs of the federal lawmakers, geared towards delivering their electoral mandates, he ensured entitlements of workers were paid as at when due, as agreed to the National Assembly staffers, legislative aides and the commission.
Less than six months in office, he engaged the staffs of the National Assembly, legislative aides through routine yearly training and retraining that will enable them confront the emerging legislative assignments especially with the new trend of technolgical breakthrough in the 21st century.
Engr Ahmed Kadi Amshi carried out a wholistic renovation of offices and provision of working tools both at the commission and National Assembly, through constant visitation to the Assembly, personal inspection of working tools and environment to ensure job satisfaction of both workers and service delivery to federal lawmakers.
Aside renovation of offices and provision of working tools, Engr Kadi few months ago inaugurated a new structure/building of the National Assembly Service Commission NASC with a ground breaking ceremony at the premises of the National Assembly, expected to be commissioned before the end of the current 9th Assembly.
The multi billion naira project will solved problems of inadequate office accommodation for staffers , proximity to National Assembly, ease of carrying out assignments at the National Assembly, payments of rents in a private apartment in the last two decades.
Engr Kadi restored the yearly conference organised by the commission for the State Assembly Services Commission with the recent one held in kaduna to chart a new course for NASC staffers and State Assembly.
The new commission had played host to many State Assembly Services Commission, trained and acquainted them with the intricacies of the jobs, while advocating for same conditions of service replicated at the state level, autonomy, and independence.
He had clamoured for not only establishment of State Assembly Services Commission in all the 36 states, but financial autonomy and not only administrative, as well as allow appointments, promotions and remunerations determined as an arm of government without interferences by the state governments.
These efforts had yielded results ,as many States had established State Assembly Services Commission, granted both administrative and financial autonomy, as well as other incentives and working template as applicable at the federal level.
He had ensured continuous training and retraining of all organs of staff of the National Assembly, with provisions of training equipment, allowances as well other incentives.
The recent popular decision of the NASC Chairman was the commencement of the lingering 2019 salary arears and other allowances of members of NASSLAF, legislative aides, an organ in the National Assembly beginning from June 2019 when the 9th Senate came on board.
The payments that started in January after appropriation in the supplementary budget in 2021 that almost created uneasy calm, minimum wage and others had doused uneasy calm and confrontations from NASSLAF members, an indication and assurance by the commission in the last training exercise for Secretaries and Personal Assistants of federal lawmakers, that legislative aides will get their entitlements not only as at when due, but when funds appropriated are available.
The ongoing payments of allowances of PASAN members among many other welfare packages, inspite initial hiccups, legislative aides arears spread across board had addressed the palpable working conditions created as a result of the accumulated arears.
This was as a result of the adminstrative wizardry adopted by the current commission that was able to reduced to the barest minimum agitations from both angles and created an enabling environment for the resumption of the federal lawmakers in the new legislative year in 2022.
With the current strides and achievements in the last near two years, the new commision under Engr Ahmed Kadi Amshi FNSE is determined to resolve issues that will continue to impact positively on the activities of lawmakers, staffs welfare and development in the coming years.
Abubakar Yusuf Writes From Abuja.