By Mercy Obojeghren
Asaba, Sept. 28, 2020 The Delta Government says it has executed 182 micro projects in 91 communities through the State Employment Expenditure for Results (SEEFOR) community-driven development.
The state Commissioner for Economic Planning, Mr Barry Gbe, said this in his address at a one-day sustainability workshop, on Monday in Asaba.
Naija247news reports that the workshop was organised for stakeholders who had benefited from the SEEFOR project community-driven development sub-component.
The commissioner listed the projects executed to include: market stalls, town hall, skill acquisition centres, electrification extensions, toilet facilities, pipe-borne water and examination halls.
Gbe, represented by his Special Assistant, Dr Alex Ighoro, stressed the need for sustainability of the SEEFOR projects by the communities where they are located.
He said that the projects were being financed by the World Bank, the European Union (EU), the state government and the benefiting communities.
“There is no gainsaying the fact that the sustainability of these micro projects must be a major priority for your respective communities.
”You must ensure that you reciprocate the gesture of the state government, which provided the funds for the projects, by putting the facilities to use, while ensuring that you imbibe a maintenance culture,” he said.
The commissioner explained that the community-driven development sub-component of the SEEFOR projects was one he had admiration for.
He said that this is because the initiative was rooted in community participation, right from the initiation stage through implementation to the completion stage.
”There is no better way to entrench community participation in governance than through this medium, where communities are allowed to propose their respective projects.
”The communities are also allowed to determine the contractors to execute the projects for them.
“They even disburse the funds to the contractors from their community’s accounts, with strict monitoring by the social implementation unit and the state project coordinating unit.
”From all indications, the community-driven development initiative is indeed a commendable one,” he said.
Gbe explained that the state government intended to leverage on the achievements of SEEFOR community-driven development initiative for future grassroots’ projects.
The state Coordinator of SEEFOR, Mr Frank Apokwu, said that the essence of the workshop was to appraise the achievements of the community-driven development initiative.
Akpokwu said that the SEEFOR projects were geared toward curbing youth restiveness in the Niger Delta zone and enhance opportunities for youth employment.
He added that it was to create access to socio-economic services, while improving the financial management of the benefiting states.
Naija247news reports that the community-driven development unit, domiciled in the state Ministry of Women Affairs office , has seen to the completion of projects in 18 out of the 25 local government areas of the state.
Some of the participants at the workshop said that the community-driven development initiative had impacted greatly on their communities.
Mrs Ejiroghene Idogho from Ethiope East Local Government area said that the renovation of 20 open market stalls in the community had attracted customers from neighbouring communities.