• Thursday, July 25, 2024
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Senate task CSOs to hold public officers accountable, tackle corruption in govt

Victor Umeh

Victor Umeh, senator representing Anambra central in the upper legislative chamber has urged the Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) to ensure accountability and tackle corrupt practices in public offices.

Umeh made this call at the 2024 Organizational Development (OD) held in Abuja on Tuesday.

According to him, the CSOs as change agents are expected to drive actions that are needed to keep the government in check, adding investment should be channelled towards promoting their activities in the country.

He said, “Civil societies play a major role in society development and promote the things we need to do to help us drive the necessary change we desire in Nigeria. I would like to say that the civil society organizations, apart from the organizational development which you need to empower yourself for the task ahead, I want to say here that the civil society organizations are not being heard effectively in Nigeria today.

“There are so many things going wrong here, which I hope the civil society organizations will mobilize themselves and drive the proactive things we need to do to be able to hold government accountable. A lot of things happen here and we overlook them, we are not hearing the organized noise or asking relevant questions that will put leaders on their toes.

“If you look at it, since last year, a number of things have happened, and we expected that the government would take actions in certain directions but people are keeping quiet and I do not think that we can have a movement in that form.”

In her remarks, Victoria ibezim-Ohaeri, the Executive Director Spaces for Change said the responsibilities of CSOs has gone beyond providing charitable donations to the less privileged, adding that organisations are now making contributions to and influencing policies for national development.

Ohaeri explained that the summit presents an unparalleled platform for donors to gain a comprehensive understanding of the strategic positioning and operational capabilities of CSOs in executing impactful activities that advance societal welfare.

“We are making lots of contributions, shaping and influencing policies, demanding policy reforms, demanding shifts in governance practices, making contributions to how policies are developed and all of that. So this is quite a lot that civil society has done.

“We also are faced with1 significant challenges, and the essence of the OD Summit is for us to come together to reflect on learnings of the past years, what has worked and what is not working, and why is it not working? So that is why we are here today,” she said.

In his remarks, Abbas Tajudeen, the Speaker of the House of Representatives urged Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) to embrace innovation and resilience mechanism in order to bridge funding challenges affecting their activities in the country.

This according to him would foster sustainable development through collaborative partnerships among businesses, governments.

Abbas who was represented by Victor Obuzor, the Chairman, Committee on NGOs, noted that the House of Representatives is committed to supporting the work of CSOs whilst recognizing the critical role they play in achieving our national development goals.

“We are working to create an enabling environment for these organizations to thrive, including not limited to legislative reforms and increased funding.”