The Director General, West African Health Organization (WAHO), Prof. Staley Okolo, joins twenty-five individuals and eleven organizations to be conferred with the 2019/2020 National Productivity Order of Merit Award.
The Minister of Labour and Employment Dr. Chris Ngige said, the award is to usher in the activities lined up to observe the 19th National Productivity Day and Conferment of the National Productivity Order of Merit Award NPOM, the Federal Government said it is ready to recognise higher productivity and excellence in service of individuals and organisations and their efforts to the growth and development of the Nigerian economy.
Ngige said that given the cardinal role of productivity in the development of any nation, it was imperative that the citizenry be consistently reminded of the need for developing a productive mindset that will ensure the productivity growth of all the sectors of the economy.
He said that the Award among other things, aims at stimulating productivity consciousness and reward innovation, creativity and hard work among Nigerians.
“It is also to recognise and reward best practices in productivity, quality and innovation,” he said.
Ngige disclosed that President Muhammadu Buhari would on Thursday May 12, confer the awards NPOM Award to deserving individuals and organisations that have worked hard for the economic growth of the country in commemoration of the 19th NPD Day and NPOM Award for 2019 and 2020.
Meanwhile, Okolo in 2018, left all his role to answer to President Buhari ’s call to national service when he was appointed to head WAHO as one of Nigeria’s Statutory Appointees to ECOWAS.
The DG WAHO is a multiple award-winning clinical leader and has in his current assignment led WAHO with intelligence, integrity and international acclaim.
He has championed several financial governance initiatives and positioned WAHO globally as West Africa’s regional health institution, with prestigious roles as one of the advisers of the London 2021 G7 summit and a member of the Commonwealth Advisory Committee on Health.
With President Buhari as the ECOWAS COVID-19 Champion, WAHO has led the hugely successful West African regional response to the COVID-19 pandemic, providing critically needed medical materials, diagnostic tests, personal protection equipment, training, risk communication resources and financial assistance to ECOWAS Member States.
Okolo spearheaded all the initiatives, supported by Nigeria’s Government which provided logistics.
He successfully negotiated the ECOWAS harmonised agreements on regional travel during the pandemic and is currently pursuing across the region during pandemics and is currently driving the agenda for local production of vaccines in the region.
Some of the awardees include the National Chairman of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), Senator Abdullahi Adamu and the Secretary to the Federal Government, Mr Boss Mustapha.
Others are the immediate past Director General, Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), Dr Chike Ihekweazu, Lagos State Commissioner for Health, Dr Akin Aboyomi, industrialist Abdusamad Rabiu and billionaire businessman, Mike Adenuga jnr, among others.
Ngige also noted that NPOM post humous awards would be conferred on late Dr. Ameyo Stella Adadevoh who died of the Ebola virus while quarantining Ebola patient, Patrick Sawyer, a Liberian in a medical facility in Lagos.
Others are the late Mr. Babatunde Lawal who until his death was the Permanent Secretary of the Cabinet Affairs Office in the office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation.
Some organisations shortlisted for the award are the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), Erisco Foods Limited, Financial Derivatives Limited, Lagos, Crown Flour Mills Lagos and Tummy Tummy Foods Industry Limited.
The Director-General, National Productivity Centre (NPC) Mr. Kasim Akor, commended the Minister for his continual support to the Centre.
He also commended President Buhari for taking the issue of productivity consciousness as apt for economic growth.
The 2019/2020 National Productivity Day and NPOM Award ceremonies could not hold in the stated years due to the COVID-19 pandemic which brought both economic and social activities to a halt globally.