The Conference was established with the return of democratic governance in the year 1999 in Nigeria. It was founded by the group of the pioneer Hon. Speakers of the State Houses of Assembly in the fourth republic.
Besides ensuring a strong and cohesive voice in the country, the Conference was established to guarantee the promotion of inter-parliamentary solidarity and legislative best practices. The Conference is a bipartisan organization whose commitment is to serve the nation and the member states irrespective of the party affiliation of the members.
For effective and efficient accomplishment of the Conference goals and objectives, the Conference had adopted the periodic meetings during which topical issues and matters of common interest to all the states of the federation would be addressed. Initially, between the year 1999 and 2003, there was no National Secretariat for the Conference owning to its lean financial capacity coupled with the high rent in Abuja. The meetings of the Conference then were held based on the willingness of any interested member state to host the Conference. Basically the meetings were being moved from one state to another. However, in the year 2003, under the chairmanship of Rt Hon Rotimi Chibuike Amaechi, the Conference acquired its National Secretariat (leased premises) in the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, and the activities of the Conference have since been coordinated from its Secretariat. The constitution of the Conference provides that a general meeting shall hold once in every two months, but may be postponed to a later period if there is a good reason for so doing.
Prior to the year 2003, the Chairmen of the Conference were not elected; they would rather emerge by signifying interest to host the Conference. In that arrangement, the host Hon Speaker would emerge the Chairman. Election was first conducted in the year 2003 and subsequently heralded the then executive committee led by Rt Hon Chibuike Amaechi of Rivers State House of Assembly.
The Conference is guided by its constitution. The constitution has been amended to redefine the tenure of the Conference Executive Committee and to also allow the rotation of the chairmanship of the Conference between the North and the South. As amended, the Conference constitution ensures a non-renewable tenure of two years for the Chairmanship of the Conference. Consequently, the Chairmanship would simply alternate between the two regions in an assembly of four years.
The following are among the modest achievements the Conference has been able to record:
The Conference, like any organization, has not been without some challenges which have been bedeviling it and hindering it from reaching the set goals. The following are few of them: