800 persons yesterday completed training on budget monitoring, evaluation, tracking and women’s right by a non-profit-organization so that they will become equip with capacity that will make them hold contractors in their localities execute projects awarded to them by government as specified in the bill of quantity (BOQ)
In a brief discussion with journalists at the end of a two days training exercise for 75 participants Calabar yesterday, Executive Director for Kebetkache Women Development Resources Centre (KWDRC),Emem Okon urged participants to apply the knowledge gained at the workshop so that projects captured in government budget in their localities are implemented according to specification so that the people will not be short-changed.
She charged the participants who were drawn from community based organizations CBOs, nongovernmental organizations NGOs and civil society organizations CSOs from four states of Cross River, Akwa Ibom, Rivers and Enugu state to engage Government ministries, departments and Agencies (MDAs) so as to make the government of the day become responsive to problems and issues plaguing their localities in their states for subsequent implementation.
Speaking on the theme; capacity building training on livelihood, community needs assessment and shadow budgeting the executive director stated that, with the training, problems arising from issues of taxation, gender responsiveness budget, would now become a thing of the past as knowledge acquired from the workshop is going to help participants make government in their localities address problems that will brew up development if they are able to influence the government to capture such projects in its budget.
On the total number of persons to be train before the organization winds up its activities, Okon stated that the organization’s target has concluded arrangement to train about 1,500 persons who will be carefully selected from several communities from four states of the federation.
She said that the training of 75 persons which ended in Calabar at the weekend has brought the number of persons equipped with budgeting/taxation knowledge to 800.
“My expectation is that having gained so much knowledge on Information from yesterday and today, on issues of taxation on issues of budget, on issues of gender responsive budget that, they will go back, step down the training to other community members.
“I believed that they will begin to engage with Government ministries and departments to ensure that their community problems and issues are captured in the government budget.
“And that they are not just captured in the budget but they are implemented.
“We expect to see that two way communication between communities and the Government to address issues of communities, assessing social services and also having project that will address health, education, even provision of water in the communities.” The DG maintained.
The Executive Director averred that the training being a part of the Oxfam Novy financing for development projects is organized by Kebetkache given the fact that the NGO is a local partners working with Oxfam with resource persons drawn from the Niger Delta budget
Monitoring Group to teach participants on how to participate in the formulation of Government budget, monitoring, evaluation and implementation to ensure that projects captured in the budget with regards to their communities are implemented as specified.
She said that if women were fully integrated into the decision making process with regards to issues of governance, Nigeria would be a better place to live.
“Though in this project there is emphasis on having increased number of women taking part in decision making, contributing to budgeting and also monitoring the budget and ensuring that the interest of women are addressed by government budget”.
To hit the target of training 1500 people, the executive director stated that the training have to be extended to marginalized groups like the physically challenge so that they can also be equip with skills on how to ensure that the interest of women is addressed by government budget. But we are looking at hat inclusiveness, so that no gender can be discriminated again when it comes to issues of governance.
When asked why the organization was formed Emem said, that the aims and objectives of the organization is for promotion of women’s right, developed the leadership capacity of women and ensure that women participate in all processes of governance with regards to development in their communities.
Government budget is not gender sensitive. We discovered that government was not making enough provision for maternal health. So that is why the target of the training is to promote that Participation. So “we are working towards getting the voices of women to be reflected in Government Budget.