UGOCHI NWAGBO reports that Anambra State Government has resolved to revive all the government and private owned skill acquisition and entrepreneurial centers in the state, which currently number over 200.
The youthful Commissioner for Youth Empowerment and Creative Economy, Hon Bonaventure Enemali announced this during an interactive session with all the non-governmental organizations, community and faith-based organizations operating in Anambra state at the Ministry’s conference hall.
Hon Enemali said the centers would be made functional with adequate training facilities, qualified facilitators and sustainable skill and entrepreneurial programmes.
He said the interactive session, the first to be held was to foster mutual relationship with the organizations and announced the plans of the state to form a formidable common front to be called Anambra State Network of NGO’s (ANSNGO), focusing on youth and women development, education , health and community development.
The youthful Commissioner tasked the NGO’s to take responsibility of monitoring and evaluating government projects in the state especially those within the purview of the ministry of Youth Empowerment and Creative Economy like the Skill Acquisition and Entrepreneurial centers.
The Guest Lecturer who is also the Anambra state Coordinator, Network on Water and Sanitation in Nigeria (NEWSAN), Professor Stanley Udedi, insisted that only affective monitoring and evaluation of projects can lead to sustainable impact on social development in the society.
Udedi who is a Professor of Applied Biochemistry, spoke on the topic ‘’ Effective Monitoring and Evaluation: A Panacea to sustainable Impact social Development’’, pointed out that there is no management without monitoring unless one anticipates a monumental waste.
Prof Udedi who is also the Dean, Students Affairs Nnamdi Azikiwe University Awka emphasized that the essence of locating a project in a community is to have impact and once that aim is defeated, the project has no usefulness to the community where it is located.
He tasked communities to own government projects located in their communities from inception to completion and usage, even as he regretted that projects fail because of lack of effective monitoring by government.
The Applied Biochemistry expert while advocating for effective monitoring of all government contracts and projects in rural communities, also commended the Youth and Creative Economy Commissioner, Hon Bonaventure Enemali for tasking NGO’s in monitoring and evaluation of ministries within his ministry’s purview as well as usage of the skill acquisition and entrepreneurial centers.
He charged the NGOs’ and CSOs’ to be problem solving in the environment of their operations, even as he urged the government to involve communities in their location of projects from the outset.
Professor Udedi who described the passage into law of the New Anambra state water policy where Urban Asset Holdings and Rural Water Supply and Sanitation Agency (RUWASSA) were charged with the responsibility of regulating the water policy as a welcome development, stressing that if it is not made fully operational, it will end up being just an ordinary paper work.
He referred to a major stakeholders meeting on how to end open defecation in Anambra state by the year 2025 which took place in Awka organized by the State government in collaboration with the European Union and UNICEF recently as one of the new things the state government was doing to encourage communication, evaluation and monitoring of activities of RUWASSA.
In her contribution, Commissioner for Indigenous Art Works, Diaspora, Culture and Tourism, Dr Sally Mbanefo informed the event participants she was delighted serving her state and particularly impressed by the talented youth of the state, who require only a little motivation to actualize their potential.
She said her ministry is collaborating with Youth Empowerment and Creative Economy to empower Anambra youths and announced that henceforth youths would be arranged to tour the marvellous Tourism sites in the state even as she pledged to donate fifty thousand naira every month to the ministry for a period of six months for whatever the commissioner deemed fit to utilize it on.
In his remarks, a renowned proposal writer and Central Bank of Nigeria Consultant, Prof Alex Ike Ikeme did an appraisal of the interactive session describing it as laudable and first of its kind, adding that the model is known as ‘Opital Model’.
Prof Ikeme was delighted that rather than NGOs and CSOs running after government, Enemali’s term in office witnessed the government appealing for partnership from NGOs and CSOs. He pointed out that he would be willing to render technical assistance and play advisory roles when called upon by the government.
Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Youth Empowerment and Creative Economy, Mr Louis Nwankwo announced that the doors of the ministry would be more open to the CSOs and NGOs now that the ministry views them as partners rather than as competitors smoking for trouble. He assured that the ministry was open for constructive engagement and criticism, since their activities were transparently done.