Connected Development (CODE) is to partner Kaduna State Ministry of Local Government Affairs In tracking the implementation of constituency projects in Kaduna state.
The Founder and Chief Executive of CODE, Hamzat Lawal asserted this when he led a team from the Organization on a courtesy visit to the Commissioner, Local Government Affairs , Shehu Usman Muhammad in Kaduna.
He said the partnership is coming through CODE’s social accountability initiative; ‘Follow The Money’, which it said was designed to ensure effective implementation of people-oriented projects for which public funds have been budgeted.
According to him, the National Assembly, recently voted for local government autonomy, so, there is need to ensure that beyond legal and regulatory framework, CODE move ahead to ensure effective implementation of the local government autonomy to ensure resources are directly put into their accounts.
He explained that CODE, in collaboration with the 23 Local government Chairmen will be setting the pace to initiate reforms that will promote government transparency, accountability and citizens’ participation in the Local government budgeting system.
Lawal added that it is time both the electorate and civil society organisations began to demand good governance from those elected into office especially those in the Local Government Area.
According to him, the demand for good governance should be at its peak as another electioneering year is fast approaching, saying political office holders should be held accountable to deliver on their promises.
In view of this, he disclosed that CODE will work with the 23 Local Chairmen in the State for improved service delivery at the grassroots, noting that initiative borne out of a collaboration between the Ministry of Local Government Affairs his Organization
“The essence of this visit to the ministry was to explore collaboration on how to ensure that intervention programmes under constituency projects by the Federal Government gets to the grassroots.
“We are leveraging on the platform where the commissioner of the Local Government mobilized all the Chairmen in Kaduna State.
“I will engage directly with the chairmen to explore collaboration and possibly sign an MoU and possibly come up with a joint tool for needs assessment and also do budget tracking, organise town hall meeting by engaging and mobilizing community members to hold government accountable and take ownership of their projects”, he said.
In his remark, the Commissioner, Shehu Usman Muhammad said his Ministry was ready to work with accountability partners, to track the effectiveness of project implementation at local government levels where transparency can further be enhanced within grassroots communities.