Community Development Monitors (CDMs) in the Gushegu Municipality of the Northern Region have been trained on capital development projects initiated by the Assembly to ensure that they effectively monitor such projects.
This is to ensure that the projects, such as health facilities, classroom blocks amongst others are executed according to specification and schedule such that they will be of high quality to ensure value for money.
The day’s training held at Gushegu for the CDMs drawn from 14 communities including Kpisinga, Kutung, Samemo, and Nayugu in the municipality was organised by NORSAAC, a Civil Society Organization (CSO), as part of its implementation of Ghana’s Strengthening Accountability Mechanisms (GSAM) project.
Topics treated during the training included capital projects planning and implementation process, rights of citizens and participation in local governance, how to get concerns addressed, and objectives and purpose of the GSAM project.
The GSAM project is being implemented by a consortium of three CSOs namely OXFAM in Ghana, CARE International, and Integrated Social Development Centre with funding from the United States Agency for International Development to strengthen citizens’ oversight of capital development projects to improve local government transparency, accountability, and performance.
Mr Issah Musah, Gushegu Municipal Chief Executive, who addressed the participants, advised them to follow due process when monitoring capital development projects initiated by the Assembly to avoid conflicts between them and contractors.
Mr also called on community members to observe the COVID-19 safety protocols as well as keep their surroundings clean to help fight the disease.
Mr Sharif Yunus Abu-Bakr, GSAM Zonal Officer at OXFAM in Ghana, urged the CDMs to work as a unit and in collaboration with the Assembly to effectively monitor the projects, adding that, they should dialogue with contractors and not to confront them in an acrimonious manner.
Mr Issah Aminu Danaa, Monitoring and Evaluation Manager at NORSAAC advised the CDMs to always get their facts right, channel them through the appropriate quarters at the Assembly, and wait for feedback to ensure the success of their work.
Mr Danaa emphasised the need for them to be active in seeking information from the Assembly and its sub-structures, and be a good source of information to their colleagues to enhance their work and ensure accountability and quality of projects delivered.
Some of the participants spoke highly about the training and gave the assurance that they would actively play their roles to ensure accountability in the delivery of projects in their communities.
Meanwhile, NORSAAC held similar training for CDMs in the Tatali-Sangule and Zabzugu Districts of the Northern Region to enable them to monitor capital development projects to be executed by those assemblies.