By Bakare Majeed
OrderPaperToday – Nigeria’s premier multi-platform legislative media organization, OrderPaper.ng has commenced a programme on citizens’ engagement on constituency projects by lawmakers.
Publisher/Executive Director of OrderPaper.ng, Oke Epia stated that the special programme called ConsTrack is conceived to engender robust citizens’ engagement and desirable reforms of the Constituency Projects scheme operated under the purview of members of the National and State Assemblies in Nigeria.
According to a statement issued on Monday by ConsTrack programme assistant, Titilope Fadare , the project will comprise a series of advocacy and engagement activities involving a wide range of stakeholders including members of the Senate and House of Representatives; State Houses of Assembly; relevant Ministries, Departments and Agencies of Government; Civil Society Organizations (CSOs), Community Based Organizations (CBOs), the Media and the general citizenry of Nigeria.
The statement quoted Mr. Epia as saying that “the project is to trigger and sustain citizens’ interest, engagement of and participation in constituency projects across the country, the project intends to ultimately deploy a viable, versatile and verified authentication platform for cross sectorial interfaces along the stakeholders’ chain.
“The programme is supported by USAID’s Strengthening Advocacy and Civic Engagement (SACE) programme, spans several months of deployment.”
Expressing delight at the opportunity to engage on Constituency Projects in Nigeria, the Publisher described the initiative as ” timely, appropriate and necessary for inclusiveness, transparency and accountability in the implementation of the scheme.
Mr. Epia said: “The implementation of this project will go a long way to engender correct understanding of Constituency Projects as currently being deployed across senatorial districts, federal and state constituencies across the country, and ultimately trigger a nationwide appreciation of the scheme and/or an organized call for reforms.
“This ConsTrack project which is a fall-out from the outcome of the Gallery Colloquium on Budgetary Reforms held in September of 2016, satisfies our goal at OrderPaper.ng of creating appropriate people-parliament interfaces to help in the deepening of democracy and the democratization process.
“It is our expectations that the outcomes of inclusiveness, transparency and accountability as well possible policy and administrative reforms that would accrue from the implementation of this programme would be viewed as our modest contributions to making Constituency Projects become veritable tools of delivering the gains of democracy in Nigeria.
“Our organization is grateful to USAID’s SACE for providing assistance to execute this very important programme and we also use this opportunity to solicit the support and cooperation of all stakeholders including the media, civil society partners as well as leaders in both the legislative and executive branches of government to enable a successful project implementation.”