A total of N92.4billion was allocated by the federal government for Women Economic Empowerment (WEE) projects from 2019 to 2021 through 259 Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs).
This was contained in the budget trend made available by the Development, Research and Project Centre (DRPC) in collaboration with Partnership for Advanced Women in Economic Development (PAWED) during the updates on WEE projects at the National level, in Abuja.
The breakdown showed that N15.1billion was allocated for WEE in 2019, N26billion in 2020 and N51 billion in 2021 while N24billion has been budgeted in the 2020 budget proposal.
The allocation was meant for 1,196 WEE projects, to be implemented by 295 MDAs as there were 275 projects in 2019, 285 in 2020 and 636 in 2021 with 73 implementing MDAs in 2019, 81 in 2020 and 105 in 2021.
Analysing the document at a 1-day workshop on monitoring and evaluation of women’s economic empowerment in Nigeria, organised by the Federal Ministry of Finance, Budget, and National Planning, in collaboration with the National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies, (NIPSS), dRPC and PAWED in Abuja, budget and policy analyst, DRPC, Kareem Abdulraza, said the organisation noticed key issues including duplicated WEE projects in MDAs, poor availability of WEE projects implementation reports and non-specification of programmes location and number of prospective beneficiaries.
“Also noticed was poor sex disaggregation of empowerment programmes, several of the MDAs have their WEE projects and allocation reduced in 2022 compared to 2021 approved budget and the lack of WEE projects coordination among the MDAs,” he explained.
Meanwhile, the director, monitoring and evaluation of the Federal Ministry of Finance, Budget, and National Planning, Dr Zakari Lawal, while presenting the draft monitoring and evaluation tool that is designed to track government intervention on women economic empowerment at the national and state levels noted that integrating MDAs working on WEE is key to ensure transparency and accountability.
‘’This tool, when implemented, will enable citizens, women, and other stakeholders the opportunity to know, track, and monitor investments on women so that either as a group or individuals, women can be able to see what is for us and follow up to ensure implementation’’ he added
He added that the Medium-Term Expenditure Framework 2021 to 2025 has recognised women as critical apart of the quest to move Nigeria to one of the greatest economies by the year 2025.
Zakari then urged women to acquaint themselves with the provisions, projects, and programmes targeting women economic empowerment so that they can continue to track these projects at the national and state levels
He then called on the participants from the 11 MDAs, who are members of the technical working group, to contribute in making the tool workable and to ensure implementation at their various MDAs to track these investments in WEE.
The national president, Nigeria Association of Women Entrepreneurs (NAWE), Barr. Veronica Ndanusa, sis though there are so many interventions for women in the country, the monitoring is very week.
She said “Women group that advocated for certain programmes, when they came for the programme, their names were not not even included for those that benefited from those programmes.
“And what has been earmarked does not really match what is on ground. That is why we are here today to better our own method of monitoring them to see that the the programmes emarked for Women are used for them”.
The director projects of the development Research and Projects Centre, Dr Stanley Ukpai, said 2021 has been a phenomenon in economic development space where several national economic development policies were launched, some of them targeting women
The Technical working group on Monitoring and Evaluation of women economic empowerment is timely and will go along way in promoting national economic development.
The 11 Ministries, and MDAs participating in the Technical Working Group are the Federal Ministry of Finance, Federal Ministry of Agriculture, Central Bank of Nigeria, Bank of Industries, National Bureau for Statistics, National Productivity Centre, Federal Ministry of Women Affairs, etc