The federal government is today inaugurating a technical working group for the pilot monitoring and evaluation framework for Women’s Economic Empowerment (WEE) interventions.
WEE helps women and girls move from limited power, voice, and choice at home and in the economy to having the skills, resources, and opportunities needed to compete equitably in markets as well as the agency to control and benefit from economic gains.
On August 17, the National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies (NIPSS) in collaboration with the Development Research and Project Center (DPRC) had earlier organised a national symposium on the application framework as it relates to the WEE.
It was then participants recommended that a working group be set up to follow up the implementation of the framework.
The group will amongst other things make recommendations to NIPSS, Federal Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning and the DPRC on the development and update of the implementation of WEE policies.
The working group will function under the guidance of these bodies.
At least 10 federal MDAs and 30 WEEs organisations will make up the working group.
The programme is funded by The Gates foundation.
PREMIUM TIMES is providing live updates of the event.
In his goodwill message, Mr Lawal said inaugurating the working group is a critical step for the ministry.
He said the platform will enable the budget ministry to know how to support and make women empowerment better.
The Head of Department of Politics and Social Studies in the Research Directorate of NIPSS, Musa Umar, presents the terms of reference for the technical working committee for WEE.
He opens the floor for comments and assures
that the implementation will not be limited to FCT alone but also at the state and local government levels.
After a short break, the inauguration of the working group to support the pilot WEE M&E commenced.
Mr Usman (NIPSS), Mr Lawal (FMBNP), and Stanley Ukpai (DRPC) were invited to the table.
Mr Usman congratulated all the members of the technical group and said they have high expectations for them to deliver.
“I am not sure is the right word is congratulation because u can imagine the task ahead and we know the task must be done,” he said.
“We must engage grassroot women because the bulk of work should be for the women in the rural areas. If the government is spending one thousand, it must get to the remotest of the villages.”
Mr Zakari said he was excited because his mandate is to institutionalise M&E.
He said the most important stakeholder is the citizen who decides who becomes what in the country, which is why the intervention will be channeled in a way that will get to the grassroots.
“For execution to happen they are the grassroots actors, we do the implementation and judge if we have delivered but it is left for the citizen to really be sure it is indeed delivered,” he said.
He said the platform will amplify the voice of the common Nigerian on monitoring and evaluating all intervention programmes.
He said the country currently has weak monitoring and evaluation culture.
“When monies are released it is business as usual, that is why Nigeria is underdeveloped because the M&E is weak, the government is spending millions on the issue of women,” he said.
Stanley Ukpai said M&E is critical to measuring the success of any intervention.
Mr Usman inaugurated the group and congratulated them.
Ade Ogunleye and Mary Hamman were nominated to draw the work plan for the working group.
Mrs Ogunleye said a summit will be organised to carry the women at the grassroots along, and the summit will be elaborate in delivering the purpose of the group.
She raised concerns that programmes by wives of state governors reach only the urban women in the past.
She said more awareness should be created in all the nooks and crannies of the country to inform of the new M&E strategy because some have been used before without giving the expected results.
She suggested advocacy visits to the MDAs that are doing the WEE policies, before implementation of the policies, so they can exclude policies that will hurt women’s economic empowerment, and add the ones that favor them.
“In terms of CBN, we have asked for soft loans without collateral for the poor women and I am certain with this strategy this will be achieved; grassroot women are the economic boosters of the country and therefore the loan is necessary,” she said.
She also suggested the identification of existing projects being done and the progress of the projects.
The event has come to an end.
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