Naomi Gabriel —
Chief Emem Okon, the Executive Director of Kabetkache Women Development and Resource Centre, on Monday during a Capacity Building Training on Gender and Social Inclusion for Community Development Committees in Port Harcourt, the Rivers state capital, called for women inclusion in community governance. The capacity building drew participants from Rivers, Imo, Delta, Akwa Ibom and Bayelsa states.
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“We want to promote effective community leadership, we are engaging with members of the community governance structure to improve inclusive processes, development and governance processes, Okon said.
“We reasoned that, obviously, development projects do not impart on every member of the community and that is because they are not part of the processes of identifying projects and also implementation. So, even while development projects are going on the communities, community members claim that they have no knowledge of it and they are not impacted by it and that means that they are excluded from the processes.”
Chief Okon said that what they hope to achieve through the training is “engaging community leaders to ensure that there is an inclusive process going on at the community level”.
“And we also understand that women always organize in their communities but when they are organizing and not targeting at people who have the responsibility and powers to address the issues, then they can organize and not get results. So what we have being doing over the years is building the capacity of women to identify their issues using different tools to identify and also identify duty bearers that have the powers and responsibilities to address those issues and to begin to engage those stakeholders,” Chief Okon concluded.