A Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) in Enugu, Divine Era Development and Social Rights Initiatives (DEDSRI) has expressed concern over what it described as “poor implementation” of constituency projects in Enugu state.
Ms Ogechukwu Enwelum , Executive Director of the organisation, who spoke in Enugu at an engagement forum on constituency projects tracking review with Communities in Enugu East and Enugu North local government areas of the state said the situation is more compounded as direct beneficiaries of the projects have no knowledge of existence of the projects in their communities
She said the meeting sponsored by ActionAid Nigeria with support from UKAid is to educate members of the communities on their roles in monitoring and evaluation to ensure projects sited in their areas are fully implemented.
“Implementation of constituency projects in Enugu state is very poor. People do not have idea about existing projects in their communities. People do not have knowledge when there are defaults. They do not have knowledge that they have a role in these projects”.
“That is why we are educating them that they have a role to play, and direct them to where to go when there are issues of default”. She said.
According to her, beneficiaries of development projects are supposed to be integrated in project conception and execution and expressed happiness that the objectives of the constituency projects tracking exercise was yielding worthwhile results.
Enwelum said “Some contractors have returned to site to complete some projects were previously abandoned”.
On the issue of corruption, she said “continued sensitization and education of our people will help them understand the importance of some of the values we are leaving behind”.
“There are values that will guide people in life, mostly; the issues of honesty, integrity and transparency. These are the things that will keep us”. She added.
On his part, Traditional Ruler, Amorji Nike Autonomous Community, Enugu East Local Government Area, Igwe Titus Okolo, said corruption has denied the people social amenities as some projects reportedly completed are non-existent.
“We often hear over the air that this project or that is completed but they are hardly physically on the ground. It is better they come and show us they have done this as announced over the air”. He said.
He advised leaders to always represent the people with the fear of God.
Igwe Okolo who is also the Chairman, Enugu East Council of Traditional Rulers, said traditional rulers will continue to engage representatives to fully address the issue of constituency projects.
He lamented lack of consultation with communities which he said would afford the opportunity to choose projects that would serve priority needs.
Also, former Local Government Chairman, Enugu East, Mathias Uchenna Anike advised traditional rulers to always monitor projects being executed in their communities.