CODE Empowers NGOs in Zamfara

Cross Section of Participants
Cross Section of Participants

…..on Monitoring Service Delivery in the Education Sector

Cross Section of Participants
Cross Section of Participants

Connected Development [CODE], an NGO based in Abuja, that leads the Follow The Money Team in collaboration with the State Voice Accountability Initiative (SAVI), a Department For International Development (DFID) funded project in Nigeria, empowered NGOs and the media in Zamfara, through a two (2) days workshop, on how they can use their newly created Education Budget Tracker to monitor service delivery in federal and state education institutions.

The workshop that was held between September 25 and 26, 2014 at the Zamfara Endowment and Zakat Board Hall in Gusau had 40 participants which included the Budget Monitoring Group of the state, several state journalist, and other NGOs working in the area of Education and Health.

The event which assembled stakeholders in Zamfara aimed at providing knowledge on how to use the Education Budget Tracker to find budget data, liberate budget data, create visualisations and report back to the platform via SMS and the web platform at while using open public data to show support for and encourage the monitoring of service delivery in the education sector.
The Monitoring and Evaluation Expert of CODE, Oludotun Babayemi stressed that the organization is providing technological support in building the Education Budget Tracker, while CSOs, NGOs, the media and other trusted source can report capital project implementation status by sending ?Name of person reporting, Location of person reporting, details of report containing project implementation status to a dedicated mobile number: 0708-866-5707.

?Going forward, CODE and the Budget Monitoring Group will be using this tool in monitoring project implementation in Federal Technical College of Education, Gusau; Federal Government Girls College, Gusau; Federal Government College, Anka; Federal Polytechnic, Kaura Namoda and other state institution for which budget is made available? Oludotun Babayemi explained.

As MDAs and governments are making their budget data available on-line and offline, CSOs and other stakeholders will be able to monitor and evaluate the performance of these capital expenditures. Other training sessions were on monitoring and evaluation components, data expedition, data mining and how to populate them online to inform citizens and equip policy makers in decisions making.

The Education Budget Tracker platform has an SMS integration to empower people without access to internet while bridging the gap between them and policy makers. “It was an interesting and educative 2-day event taking us through the budget cycle and how budget data can be used in monitoring service delivery through the budget tracker, we only hope this engagement can continue” Ahmed Ibrahim, the State Team Leader, SAVI.
?This tool seeks to empower CSOs actors and citizens to hold government to account on public spending using mobile phones, local knowledge and content in the education sector while providing policy makers with concrete feedback from the people and information on the ground? said Hamzat Lawal, Chief Executive, CODE.

Also, ?this would help bring the government closer to the people to better serve them on education interventions that goes to the state while ensuring international donor support compliments government projects, so we don?t have duplications like tin the past?, stressed Lawal.

At the end of the workshop, the participants agreed to provide feedback using the Education Budget Tracker by sending geo specific reports of project implementation status in the state education institutions while leaving on the SMS integration. Also, to always meet once a month to share experience and lessons learnt from different community outreach and needs of their constituency (the local people) on education interventions.

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