The Head of Administration & Human Resources, NICO Lagos Office, Miss Victoria Overo, has identified self-development as key to career success, saying this underpins the approval, on the 10th of February, 2015, of her lateral conversion from the Secretarial to the Administrative Cadre by NICO’s Executive Secretary, Prof. Barclays Foubiri Ayakoroma.

Overo, a 1995 HND Secretarial Studies graduate of Auchi Polytechnic, did her NYSC with First Bank of Nigeria Plc in Lagos; and after her youth service in 1997, she had the dream of working in an oil company or a multinational but it never materialized, realizing then that, ‘all that glitters is not gold.’

In 1998, she was introduced to the first Executive Secretary of NICO, Mrs. Victoria Agodo, who liked her (Overo’s) guts and resilience, interviewed her and offered her an appointment as a confidential secretary on 10th  February, 1998.

However, there was a twist when she realized that her take home pay was less than N2,000.00; her dream of living a comfortable life was nowhere close; and she rejected the offer but was advised then by Mr. Louis Eriomala (Director, NICO Lagos Office now), to take the job offer and grow in it, instead of sitting down at home doing nothing.

Incidentally, that same year, Gen. Abdulsalam Abubakar became the Head of State and increased salaries of workers and hers went up to N11,000; but her joy was short-lived as it was again reduced to N7,000.00 due to the inability of the Federal Government to continue with the payment.

For Overo, the motivation to acquire higher academic qualifications was when she realized that she could not rise beyond Grade Level 14 in the Federal Service as an HND holder; and she had to enrol for her PGD in Public Administration in the 2007/2008 academic session with the Lagos State University (LASU) and later proceeded for her Master’s in Public Administration in the 2009/2010 academic session in the same institution.

On completion of both programmes, she duly informed the Management of NICO with a request for lateral conversion to the Administrative Cadre; and a letter dated 10th February, 2015, conveyed the approval by the Executive Secretary for her conversion from Chief Confidential Secretary to Chief Admin Officer, coincided with the 17th Anniversary of her working in NICO.

Thus, Overo says she is grateful to the management of NICO for giving her the opportunity to develop herself; the pioneer Executive Secretary, Mrs. Victoria Agodo, who gave her the job; Director, NICO Lagos Office, Mr. Louis Eriomala, who encouraged her to take the job; and Barr. Clifford Atakere, who motivated and gave her moral support.

Nkemdilim Offor &
Elfrida Ambakaderemo
NICO Lagos Office