The training was geared towards mobilization of citizens at the grassroots, particularly, women for effective and responsive delivery of fiscal attributes that enhances the empowerment of women through (participatory) gender responsive budgeting, fiscal equity and economic justice for vulnerable sections of society, among others.
The Honorable Speaker of Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly, Rt. Honorable (Barr) Onofiok Luke was in attendance and formally opened the workshop, after a keynote speech, which encapsulated some aspect of Akwa Ibom State Government’s efforts towards gender responsiveness through the State’s fiscal governance and budgetary architecture, which the State Legislature under his leadership plays a critical role. He assured the participants that Akwa Ibom State Legislature is opened to suggestions and contribution from individuals, Civil Society Organizations and development partners geared at stimulating the development in the Akwa Ibom State and Nigeria, in general. He commended the organizers of the workshop for considering Akwa Ibom State as host of the event and conveyed greetings from the people and government of Akwa Ibom State.
The workshop drew participants from different Local Government Areas and MDAs from the following States, Enugu, Lagos, Bayelsa, Delta, Rivers and Akwa Ibom State.
During the training, six (6) papers were presented on various topics with practical group work on development of (gender responsive) action plans for the grassroots. Among the papers presented were:
- Strategic Leadership and Influencing through Oxfam’s 5 Pathways of Change: Perspectives on Strategic Partnership and Financing for Development.
- Mainstreaming the SDGs into the Local Government System: Approaches for Effective Delivery at the Grassroots.
- Development Opportunities for the Local Governments through Effective Engagement at the Grassroots: Using the FADAMA Project as a Case Study.
- Gender Roles within the Perspectives of Fiscal Justice.
- The Context and Challenges for Gender Equity in Nigeria’s Fiscal Architecture: Way Forward for LGAs in Nigeria.
- Monitoring, Tracking and Evaluation of Gender Responsive Envelopes in the Budget: Approach and Method.
1. Government Budget at all levels should be made to be peoples centered from formulation to implementation stages.
2. The Local Government should be recognized among actors that are expected to play a key role in the implementation of the SDGs (Sustainable Development Goals) programmes.
3. Some successes of the FADAMA Project should be replicated in the Local Governments Areas for the enhancement of development blueprints at the grassroots.
4. Societal roles assigned on gender, should be opened and not limited to the traditional responsibilities among men and women.
5. Fiscal policy should be formulated to promote gender equality and discourage gender prejudice.
6. Proper monitoring, tracking and evaluation of government programs and projects, as it affects, Gender Responsive Budgeting should be put in place.
7. Public mobilization/ awareness on gender responsive budgeting should kick-start from the grassroots.
- There is need to create an effective monitoring, tracking and evaluation mechanism to ensure proper flow and usage of funds and grants meant for Gender Responsive Programs (GRP).
- There is need to encourage projects and programmes that will help in bridging the gaps between rural and the urban dwellers.
- There should be enforcement of policies on gender issues and should be implemented across all tiers of government.
- Government should establish efficiency unit to monitor budget implementation.
12. Gender Responsive Budgeting should be legislated as an act of parliament and should be mainstreamed in all Ministries, Departments and Agencies.
The Niger Delta Budget Monitoring Group and Oxfam are further willing to partner with relevant government MDAs in the Planning and implementation of a Gender Responsive Budgeting tools and templates.
Participants commended the sponsors and organizers for this impactful training, being; the Niger Delta Budget Monitoring Group with support from Oxfam in Nigeria and craves for more of these trainings in future.
1. Agatha Okike-Enugu State
2. Uduak Brown-Akwa Ibom State
3. James Osain-Bayelsa State
4. Nwoke Cordelia Nneh-Rivers State
5. Bakporhe Ogheneovo-Delta State
6. Adetola Adefunke-Lagos State
7. Celestine Okwudili Odo-Oxfam in Nigeria
8. Dr. George-Hill Anthony-Niger Delta Budget Monitoring Group