(Group of Kaduna-based journalists during a two-day conflict sensitive reporting organised by Centre-LSD, supported by Christian Aid held in Kaduna recently)
As Kaduna State Government and its citizens open up the education sector of the State and the need for effective media involvement, a non-governmental organisation working around good governance, Partnership to Engage, Learn and Reform (PERL) with finding support from UKaid, has facilitated a two-day training for media practitioners in the state with staff of key implementer, Kaduna State Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB) in attendance.
Kaduna open education is a continuation of Open Government Partnership (OGP) policy which enables the citizens to own and drive the process through co-chairing syatem (government on one side and citizens on the other side) – aiming at effective service delivery as prioritise by the citizens using tools like community development chartered (CDC), policy documents and budget(s) .
Now, this two-day training of both conventional and the new media practitioners held between Wednesday and Thursday (06/03-07/03), is expected to expose participants to the nitty-gritty of the implementation of the partnership fund in the state – starting with basic education.
One of the key objectives of the training according to the State Partnership Facilitator, PERL, Istifanus Akau, was to strengthen the understanding of the conventional and new media on education policies and practices in the state with a view to build public confidence and trust in the school system.
Taking the participants through the rudiments of the role of the media in the implementation of the partnership fund in education sector in Kaduna state, a Consultant with PERL, Hajiya Hadiza Umar, harped on the need for stakeholders to take a step further to address all manners of identified irregularities in public primary schools.
Explaining how important this development was she said, the technical working group had carried out necessary interactions at local and state level to make it work.
She said, there was public policy dialogue first, across the 23 local government areas of the State where people were happy that, they would be making impact on education policy.
The grand finale of that public dialogue she said, happened at the state level which led to development of education policy document which will guide all the stakeholders to bring back the list glory of public schools starting with the elementary.
According to her, it is important to engage the media because it serves as a bridge between the government and the citizens to keep the democratic system on track – as it performs its watchdog task.
To her, “media serves as bridge between the government and the citizens to keep democracy going, plays watch dog role in ensuring that government is responsible and accountable to people by keeping surveillance on implementation of planned public policies.
“Media also broadens civic conversion discourse on plans, public sector reform issues and policies and budgets by increasing the number of traditional and social media to productively engage governance with special focus on improved service delivery blockages in prioritized sectors of health, agriculture and education.”
In a remark, Director, SUBEB, Aminu Ibrahim told the participants that, his agency was ready to partner relevant civil society organisations and the media, to improve child protection and service delivery issues in basic schools.
One of the issues in public schools as highlighted by Ibrahim was high record of child abuse despite measures being taken by government and its partners to address the incident of rape, child labour among others.
Shola Ojo Sent In This Report
Shola Ojo Sent In This Report