The non commencement of work at the various key projects sites across the 3 local government areas in Benue State by the Lower Benue River Basin Development authority has become a source of worry to benefiting community members and stakeholders in the state.
This was even as the Catholic Diocese of Makurdi Foundation For Justice Developments and Peace FJDP) in collaboration with the Catholic Agency for Overseas Development (CAFOD) held a conference with community representatives to brainstorm on ways to fast tract the implementation of these projects which include Boreholes and irrigation projects in Gwer, Gwer-west and Makurdi local government areas of Benue State
The state coordinator of FJDP, Rev. Fr. Remigius Ihyula through the programme manager, Blessing Adzaagee, explained that the foundation has trained some community members in the affected local governments in social accountability and also evaluating the progress and success of these projects in their respective localities.
“We are committed to link the project implementer and its host community to develop a cordial working relationship, before now most of the benefiting community members were not aware that projects sited in their domains are ought to be monitored by them to ensure their proper protection and execution, until the members of the FJDP carryout awareness campaign to enlightened them on the need for them to also monitor their projects to a logical conclusion to ensure that they are executed and give it maximum protection as well.”
Fr Ihyula however warned community members that the idea of training them on accountability and evaluation was not for community members to form a habit of probing or doing unwholesome practices to contractors but to make friends and partner with the contractors to ensure accountability an transparency in the execution of the projects
He explained that the organisation which operate in many states of the federation including Benue is currently focusing on implementation of some projects meant for 3 local governments in Benue which include Gwer, Gwer-west and Makurdi.
According to him, in Gwer local government 3 boreholes were to be dug in three different locations in the area, in Gwer-west the project is filling of erosion depression on Dam and rehabilitation/ construction of irrigation Canals at Naka dam project, while in Makurdi the project was the upgrading of the irrigation infrastructure where he expressed dismay on why contractor are yet to commence work , saying community members holds these projects dear, therefore, the foundation will monitor its execution to a logical conclusion.
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