Our Project Tracking Officer for Edo state, Moses Ilevbaoje BudgIT, explains how zonal intervention projects are being implemented in the state.
About N900 million has been earmarked for zonal intervention projects in Edo North, civic technology organization, BudgIT Nigeria, can disclose.
The organization says only few of these empowerment projects would be implemented at the end of the day due to lack of citizens’ awareness on projects.
Project Tracking Officer for Edo, Moses Ilevbaoje BudgIT, disclosed this in his report on 2017 Zonal Intervention Projects which he tracked in Edo state.
BudgIT through it subset, Tracka has uncovered how projects are shrouded in secrecy and labelled as empowerment projects.
These projects, the organization explains, has no specific definition.
Tracka is a network of active citizens who track the implementation of public projects in the budget and gives feedback to their community.
“Project line items in the budget nominated by the national assembly members representing Edo North were mainly empowerment provisions, while detailed locations were not specified in the budget this makes it difficult for the residents to track and demand the implementation of the project.
“Over N900 million budgeted for the execution of these empowerment projects but only few will be implemented at the end of the day due to lack of citizens’ awareness on projects/
“Letters were written delivered to the senator and House of Representatives members, no response was avail as at the time of writing this story, ” Mr. Ilevbaoje, said.
He explained that Tracka is out to eradicate the culture of stomach infrastructure in Nigeria, adding: “that is why we take civic education to grassroots.”
According to him, in the past, there was low level of citizens’ participation in governance; this has led to under development in the society.
“Our goal in Tracka is to bridge the gap between citizens and the government. This will enhance more citizens’ inclusion in the budget process and project implementations.
He listed the projects being monitored in Edo North Senatorial district to include:
Sensitization/training and strategic empowerment of youth and human right advocacy, Etsako west and Etsako East LGA, Edo North senatorial district, Edo state for N150 million.
Sensitization and strategic empowerment on the right of people living with HIV/AIDs in Etsako East LGA, Edo North senatorial district, Edo state for N130 million.
Strategic empowerment of youth in Owan East/Owan West federal constituency provision of tricycles, motorcycles, gen-sets, sewing machines etc for N80 million.
Advocacy and sensitization on the rights of children and women in Etsako East LGA, Edo North senatorial district, Edo state for N100 million.
He said: “The challenges discovered was lack of citizen inclusion and need assessment by members of the National Assembly.
“The residents of these communities expressed displeasure over project implementation in the previous years.
Ojavun Emai town hall meeting
He explained that for residents of Ojavun, a community in Owan East Local government area; development has led to anguish, as the elected representatives do not carry them along.
“A resident who spoke with the Tracka team at a town hall meeting held revealed that we have little or no idea about constituency projects. They believe that lawmakers use their personal fund to finance projects.
“One of the community chiefs, also lamented to the team that it would be better for the legislature to nominate developmental projects; school, Water and hospital, which have a direct impact on the lives of the people in the community he said.
“The team encourages members of the community to engage their representatives at the national assembly. They wrote a letter to the responsible agency requesting an update on 2017 zonal intervention projects implementation.
“Tracka will ensure to follow up on the implementation of the projects in the respective communities and gives feedback to the public,” He added.