Photo L-R: Comm PBC and Co-Chair (govt), OGP Kaduna, ED KADPPA, Thomas Gyang and Co-Chair (Citizens) OGP Kaduna at a retreat in Abuja on Thursday.
Kaduna State Governor, Mallam Nasir El-Rufai has gave an hint on why the state joined global platform on service delivery called Open Government Partnership (OGP).
The governor, who wrote the foreword of Kaduna OGP State Action Plan 2018-2020 said, the state joined to correct the anomalies in governance and ensure that the people who are the ultimate stakeholders in determining how their resources should be utilized based on their priorities.
Already, there is a tool called Community Development Chartered (CDC) developed for Kaduna communities to prioritise their needs in order of their importance which can be presented to their policymakers or used by the local government in its budget processes.
The governor in that foreword wrote, “we are aware of the tremendous efforts made in the process of the development of the action plan by civil society, private sector, development partners and government officials.
“Therefore, we are personally committed to ensuring that our areas of commitment are comprehensively implemented for the benefit of the citizens.”
El-rufai said, “Kaduna joined OGP to correct the anomalies in governance and ensure that the people who are the ultimate stakeholders in determining how their resources should be utilized, the Kaduna State Government indicated interest to join the OGP, a step the Federal Government also took.
“Kaduna state has now fully joined the OGP. This will further entrench our commitment to promoting fiscal responsibility, access to information and citizens’ engagement.
“In the development of our 2016-2020 Kaduna State Development Plan which is anchored on jobs, social justice and prosperity, a wide range of consultation were made with the citizens starting in the rural areas, private sector and civil society.
“The document was crowd sourced and over 700 inputs were received from local, national and international sources. The document reflects the desires of the people and is being actualised through our annual budget.
“I hope that, this partnership with non-state actors will further provide our citizens the opportunity to know and understand the activities of their government.”
The governor then specially appreciated the Department for International Development (DfID) for their support through the PERL-ECP and other DfID funded programme in insuring the state has an implementable Kaduna action plan.
In a remark at the opening of a 2-day (6-7-12) Kaduna State OGP steering committee and other critical stakeholders retreat in Abuja on Thursday, Commissioner, Planning and Budget Commission, Kaduna State, who is also the Co-Chair (government), Muhammad Sani Abdullahi, described the meeting as very important.
According to him, the meeting was important because it will further equip the capacity of the participants who were expected to reach out to majority of Kaduna citizens especially those at grassroots for productive engagements in governance.
“The meeting is very important. Open budget does not exist for people to just download, we expect to see more accountability as a guide against corruption. It is designed to see better services no matter where you are in Kaduna state.
“At the end of the day, if OGP international rated us the best and our health system, our schools and other services are not improved, then, to me, it is useless. Our efforts must translate to improved service delivery.
“I expect we will step down the training to others who are not here so they can all come on board so we can match what we have in OGP with the reality on ground”, he hoped.
Also speaking, Executive Director, Kaduna State Public Procurement (KADPPA), Thomas Gyang, restated the commitment of the state government to deliver improved services especially, in the health sector.
Civil Society Adviser, OGP National Secretariat, Stanley Achonu noted that, Kaduna was doing well in meeting the basic requirements of OGP.
Stanley was of the view that, the seriousness of Kaduna OGP would help the citizens to have effective service delivery by way of public engagement, monitoring and accountability.
Earlier in his welcome address, OGP Co-Chair (Citizens), Mustapha Jumare urged participants to take all the sessions seriously – towards improving service delivery in Kaduna State which believed is a joint responsibility.