JDPC Nnewi engages govt on  CREAM project

The Justice Development and Peace Caritas, JDPC of the Catholic Diocese of Nnewi, Anambra State led by its Director Rev. Fr. Benedict Chima Okolo on Thursday embarked on an advocacy meeting with the Special Adviser (SPAD) to the Governor on Political Matters Dr Alex Obiogbolu.

The advocacy was part of their Community Resilience Engagement And Management (CREAM) Project being implemented in Anambra State in partnership with the Nigeria Civil Society Situation Room with funding from the United Kingdom Foreign, Commonwealth, and Development Office (UK FCDO).

Rev. Fr. Okolo during his introductory speech appreciated Dr. Obiogbolu for the opportunity he provided to the Advocacy Team to engage and interact with his office on the developmental concerns of the Diocese as it affects Anambra State, especially in the areas of the Health and Education sectors.

He utilized the moment to extol the Nigeria Civil Society Situation Room for their efforts in entrenching democracy and good governance in Nigeria while commending the UK FCDO for their ever flowing support to local organizations in amplifying the change that they want to see for the good of the society.

The Technical Project Staff of the CREAM project, Onyekachi Ololo during his presentation disclosed that the CREAM project focuses on bridging education and health knowledge gap in Anambra State.

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This according to him was to empower the citizens in asserting their rights in order to foster a more informed and equitable society.

Ololo explained that 60 community working groups were on-boarded across selected 12 communities from 6 LGAs of the 3 senatorial zones of the state, selected based on council areas facing security and flooding issues.

The Technical Project Staff said further that a buffer local government area was chosen to understudy the effects of the policies and programs of the government in the areas of education and healthcare in these selected communities for effective engagement with relevant stakeholders.

Ololo noted that the impact of the COVID 19 pandemic, fuel subsidy removal amongst rising inflation was enough to begin building the resilience of community members.

The palliative program of Anambra State government according to him would be great to provide succour to the citizens if properly implemented in the state.

He said that findings by the Community Working Groups around Budget Implementation and Project Tracking exercise revealed that the government needed to give more attention to the education and healthcare facilities.

Ololo however applauded the great impact of the free education and free antenatal care and delivery orograms at government owned facilities, stating that feeders from citizens reveal that they are happy with the programs.

In his reaction, the Special Adviser to the governor, Dr Alex Obiogbolu commended the resolve of JDPC, Nnewi Diocese to engage the government and hold public office holders accountable. 

He called on more CSOs to constructively engage the government and ensure that they demand good governance and accountability from their leaders.

Dr Obiogbolu revealed that the dream of the Anambra State governor for Anambra State and Ndi-Anambra has always been to build a liveable and prosperous destination state for investment and that his policies and programs were geared towards achieving this dream. 

He used the occasion to highlight the landmark achievements of the administration of the day.

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