Director-General, Directorate of Technical Aid Corps, Rt. Hon.( Dr.) Yusuf Buba Yakub, says Nigeria possesses the needed population of skilled youths to provide technical assistance to countries of Africa, Caribbean and the Pacific regions in line with President Tinubu ‘s 4-D foreign policy agenda.
Buba, who said it was the thinking of the Tinubu Administration to continue to project Nigeria in positive light using the TAC Scheme as an instrument of foreign policy to deploy soft power diplomacy,also added that what was needed to sustain the objective of the TAC Scheme was for its strategic stakeholders and partners to continue to work in synergy with one another.
The DTAC boss stated the above in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania,while rounding off a monitoring and evaluation visit to that country earlier in the week.He expressed satisfaction that the TAC Scheme has in the last thirty-five years of operation remained on course by developing the needed manpower in recipient countries where former trainees are now beginning to train others.
During the visit to the Nigerian High Commission in Dar es Salaam, where the DTAC delegation led by the DG met with TAC Scheme Volunteers serving at Zanzibar, the former Federal lawmaker said he was, particularly, happy with the contributions of the Volunteers to their places of service. He noted the noble role of the High Commission in support of the TAC Scheme and the Volunteers, while urging them to maintain what was obviously a very cordial working relationship.
“We are here in furtherance of Mr President’s 4-D Foreign Policy Agenda. These include: Democracy, Demography, Development and the Diaspora. In our own little way at the Directorate of Technical Aid Corps, DTAC, we have keyed into this Presidential vision and mandate, knowing that Nigeria possesses the right demography to bring in results anywhere we find ourselves.With a sizable and talented youth population that is also energetic and skillful,we have the manpower and expertise to go round where they are needed.
“On this visit ,we are out to meet our Volunteers , officials of Governments where they are serving and our Mission officials who relate directly with these Volunteers. This is in our bid to promote the foreign policy agenda of our dear President as I said before,using our Agency’s clear mandate. We know that, globally,soft-power diplomacy is the in-thing.Even after an act of coercion, it is important to know that we must return to the table to engage in order to get the enabling environment we all desire to live together. And so, DTAC has continued to carry on this mandate in over the past thirty-five years with visible results.
“Therefore,we are here to monitor, evaluate and to review the TAC Scheme in countries where we have Volunteers and also build new relationships where we do not have. All this is to see how effective the Scheme has fared as an instrument of foreign policy these past thirty-five years. Interestingly, in countries we have visited, we have seen Ministers and government officials who are products of the TAC Scheme and the general position is that the Scheme has made progress and copious impact and is still being desired to aid in technical areas and the Sciences in many more countries, “Buba noted.
Earlier, Nigeria’s High Commissioner to the United Government of Tanzania, Amb. (Dr.) Hamisu Umar Takalmawa,while welcoming the DTAC delegation and the TAC Scheme Volunteers had noted the high pan-African credentials and friendliness of Tanzania, saying that Nigeria needed to learn a lesson or two from the palpable unity and peaceful that exist among the people of the country , which in his expression, has been run in phases from Nyerere to the current President,Samia Suluhu Hassan.
While rejoicing with the DTAC boss on his appointment as DG, Dr. Takalmawa said he was highly convinced that Rt.Hon. Buba’s crossing-over from the legislature to the executive arm of government was a positive omen to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs which he had oversighted in his years as Chairman of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs.He thanked the DTAC boss for the many noble achievements the nation’s Foreign Service recorded under his kind leadership at the National Assembly.
During the course of further interactions with the group of Volunteers from Zanzibar and the officials of the Nigerian Mission in Dar es Salaam,the DTAC delegation noted the effective roles played by the various stakeholders in the TAC Scheme and commended them for being alive to their responsibilities towards the Volunteers on one hand and the Volunteers’ places of primary assignment on the other hand.Led by Mr Felix Adegoke Popoola,the TAC Scheme Volunteers lauded the exemplary roles of the Nigerian High Commissioner to the United Government of Tanzania, Amb. Takalmawa, and the high degree of friendship engendered by the various communities of their service.