Nigerians from across the globe will converge on their country’s capital Abuja on 25-26 July for this year’s Nigerian Diaspora Day (NDD).
The annual event brings together Nigerians resident abroad and representatives of the federal and state governments and their agencies as well as of the organised private sector to discuss areas of partnership in national development.
The theme for this year, which will also have a virtual component, is “Consolidating Diaspora Engagement for National Development”, according to the Nigerians in Diaspora Commission (NiDCOM), organisers of the NDD.
Activities and deliberations during the 2-day event will focus on galvanising the skills, networks and experiences of the diaspora as indispensable assets to bolster Nigeria’s growth, NiDCOM said.
Hon (Dr) Abike Dabiri-Erewa, the Chairman/CEO of NiDCOM, has announced that the NDD would wear a new look this year.
Addressing a press briefing on Wednesday in Abuja, Ms Dabiri-Erewa revealed that the 2023 Diaspora Day would feature, among others, the Diaspora Merit Awards as well as presentations by diaspora groups.
The Awards are being presented for the first time and they recognise Nigerians living in the diaspora who have positively contributed both to Nigerian development as well as to that of their countries of residence.
The Awards are not only to celebrate the recipients but also to encourage them to continue to contribute to their home country’s national development, she added.
“We must accept that the diaspora characterises a powerful force for change – not only because of the financial remittances, but because they are the link to our past and present, and possibly our hope for a better future for Nigeria,” the NiDCOM chief said.
Dr Dabiri-Erewa commended Nigerian diaspora organisations for their contributions to the development of Nigeria and she encouraged them to cooperate among themselves.
The NiDCOM’s Executive Chairman used the opportunity to appeal to Nigerians living outside their homeland to register on the Commission’s Nigerian Diaspora Registry portal.
She explained that the data derived from the portal would aid the federal government in quickly addressing any emergency situations in which Nigerians are affected.
Speaking at the briefing, Mr Omusa Baba Onyoma, the Vice Chairman of the Nigerians in Diaspora Organisation Europe (NIDOE), thanked the NiDCOM chief for her support through the years. He expressed his happiness at the novelty of the 2023 NDD ceremony.
Onyoma, who represented the Chairman of NIDOE, Mr Bashir Obasekola, at the press meeting, stated that a visiting delegation of NIDOE was on a week-long engagement in Nigeria.
NIDOE members pay courtesy visits to government agencies, conduct medical outreaches and participate in the Diaspora Day celebrations during ‘A Week in and for Nigeria’, as the annual engagement of the organisation is called.
Also speaking at the press briefing, Mrs Susan Waya, the Chairperson of NIDO UK-South, lauded Dr Dabiri-Erewa for her unwavering efforts for the diaspora and called on Nigerians to support the NiDCOM chief. Meanwhile, Dr Obasekola has arrived in Abuja from his base in Moscow to participate in the 2023 NDD and the other activities of NIDOE in Nigeria.
To participate virtually at the 2023 Nigerian Diaspora Day, register HERE