Category: News

Enhancing Citizens Participation in Talata Marafa LG, Zamfara State

July 24, 2021 | 1st Talata Marafa Town Hall Meeting | Talata Marafa Local Government Secretariat Chamber

Special Guests:  Councillor Galadima Ward, Hon. Lukman Lawal

Councillor Morai Ward, Hon. Tijjani Shittu Morai

Director of Planning; Talata-Marafa Local Government Council, Alhaji Bello Jangebe

The local government is the third tier of government and is meant to be the closest to the people as rural development revolves around it. Sadly, the reverse is the case in many parts of Nigeria, as this supposedly closest system is far from the people, spurring disinterest by citizens in matters pertaining to governance. This disinterest ensures that activities of governance are left in the hands of a tiny part of the populace. 

While a few people can contest for political office, the participation of everyone goes a long way in reducing the level of distrust between the government and the people, educating the citizens about governmental activities and keeping the abuse of power in check.

Such participation further ensures that citizens can hold duty bearers at this level accountable to deliver on their responsibilities, and can develop ‘the voice’ to demand better from government at the state and federal levels.

On July 24, 2021, the Talata Marafa MyLG town hall meeting themed “Enhancing Citizens Participation in Local Governance” sought to educate citizens on the constitutional importance of youth involvement in local government activities. The meeting also provided a platform for citizens in the audience to ask questions on matters that affect them, strengthening the capacity of citizens to advance government accountability at the local government level.

The Director made a presentation on how youth can contribute to the betterment of the country rather than continue to focus on what the country can do for them. He emphasised the importance of trust, honesty and modesty in governance, enjoining citizens to elect leaders who are known to be fair and just.

The Galadima Ward councillor also called on people to stop overburdening the local government officials on issues outside the constitutional provisions of their roles and responsibilities. He emphasised that the government alone at all levels cannot provide all that the citizens require from it without citizens’ active participation in good governance.

During the town hall meeting, some critical issues were raised including the involvement of groups and associations in local government activities that require active community participation; the creation of Talata Mafara Social Media Organisation; and the utilisation of the local government internally generated revenue (IGR) for the development of the area rather than being shared among the political elites.            

At the townhall meeting, it was concluded that granting full autonomy to local government areas can guarantee development at the grassroots especially for Talata Mafara LGA.

There were 52 participants – 37 men & 15 women.

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Role of Citizens in Reviving Local Government Functions and Governance

May 20, 2021 | Gusau LG Town Hall Meeting | Gasau Town Hall 

Special Guests: Mal. Ibrahim Dan Biba, Mai Unguwa

Alh. Muhsin Bello, Mai Unguwar IBB Lay Out

Saminu Ya’u, Shugaban Matasa Yan Mangwarora

Hon.Hanafi Bagiour, T/Wada,  Ward Councilor Aspirant

Mal. Bello Samaila, Chief Imam Ja’o Mosque.

Abdulrashid Almustapha Jabaka, Chief Ladan o Imamu Malik Mosque

Abdulmajid Aliyu, Chief organizing secretary.

Mr. Sunday Matheu, Representative of Igbo people in Gusau

Governance begins at the grassroots level. Citizens must be able to feel the impact of their local governments through the works done by the local governments. Where such works are not visible, where the impacts of local governance are not felt within communities, it begs the question, why then do local governments exist?

Graced by esteemed members of the community, personnel from media houses, and representatives of various organizations, the 1st Gasau town hall meeting themed “Ask Not What Your Country Can do for You,” was held to discuss the role of citizens in reviving local government functions and governance.

The meeting addressed four key points; the local government as the cradle of democratic leadership, the importance of having trusted administrators in offices, how the local government plays represents the community at the state level, and finally, the concept of federalism.

Equally addressed were the advantages of citizens’ participation in local governance and the way and manner this takes place. According to the speakers, citizens can participate in local governance by direct involvement in decision-making processes, actively participating in local government elections, running for LG offices, writing to the administration on changes they want around the community, and donating to community projects.

Resolutions reached included a call for more active citizens’ participation in local government affairs and that the local government should make efforts to ensure such participation. 

There were 22 participants – 22 men

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Ensuring Active Citizens’ Participation in Bungudu Local Government, Zamfara

March 28, 2021 | 1st Bungudu LG Town Hall Meeting | Dan Sokoto Model Primary School, Bungudu

Special Guests: Alhaji Dahiru Mande, Director Social, Bungudu LG

Mr Maniru Rabiu, Chairman, National Union of Local Government Employees (NULGE) 

Alhaji Kabiru Usman, Representative of Emirate council

Nasiru Ibrahim, Information Officer, Bungudu LGA

Nuradden Hamisu Ibrahim, Bungudu Local Government Coordinator

Citizens have a tendency to overlook the affairs of local governments or matters of state governance to concentrate on the bigger picture at the federal level. Yet, governance begins from the government closet to people at the grassroots: the local government.

The 1st #MyLG town hall meeting in Bungudu local government, themed, “Ensuring Active Citizens’ participation in Local Governance”, was held to educate citizens on the importance of participation in local governance. The meeting had in attendance the Director Social, the chairman of the National Union of Local Government Employees (NULGE), the representative of the emirate council, local Government staff, and leaders of youth organizations.

At the meeting, it was observed that citizens were unaware of the affairs of the local government or the role it plays within the community. Information about the LG was either obscure to or hidden from the public; this greatly influenced citizens’ disinterest in LG projects. It was equally observed that local government funds were manipulated by the state government, media houses do not shade enough lights on local government projects which gave room for local government leaders to lie about ongoing projects in their communities using social media.

Resolutions were reached to prioritize citizens’ needs in local government budgets and make the budget information public. Also, there was a request to push for regulations of the joint accounts between the state and local governments to curb manipulations at the state level. It was equally agreed that stronger laws are needed to regulate the use of social media by local government officials. Finally, the local government was tasked to ensure citizens’ active participation in its affairs and youths’ involvement in budget formation and tracking.

There were 27 participants – 22 men & 5 women.

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Enhancing Citizen’s Participation in Bakura Local Government, Zamfara State

March 30, 2021 | 1st Bakura LG Town Hall Meeting | Bakura Local Government Secretariat 

Special Guests: Alhaji Mukhtar Halilu, Personal Assistant to the Sole Administrator

Alhaji Abdulrazak Yusuf, Director of Planning, Bakura LG

The participation of citizens in local governance is important. It provides the grounds for achieving transparency and accountability in government. Without citizens’ active participation, local governments are free to act at will and unchecked.

The first town hall meeting in Bakura local government was held to educate citizens on the importance of active participation in local governance as well as the role of local governments in social and economic developments. This meeting was graced by esteemed members of the Bakura local government, including representatives of the Bakura LG council, representatives of youths and women organizations, social media organizations, and many others. 

Papers delivered and discussions held at the meeting centred around identifying or developing mechanisms to ensure citizens actively participate in governance and are public social well-being catered for by the local government.

In conclusion, the local government was tasked to make available registrars for documenting marriages, birth, and death of citizens to stir citizens’ engagement. The local government is to see to the provision of social amenities such as good roads, water supply, electricity, and sanitation of drainages to avoid water flooding certain areas in the community. Furthermore, the government is to pioneer community development by making educational facilities and supplies, youth development programs, and a market, available. 

There were 47 participants – 27 men & 20 women.

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Ensuring Active Citizens’ Participation in Gummi Local Government, Zamfara

March 31, 2021 | 2nd Gummi LG Town Hall Meeting | Gayari District Head Palace, Gummi

Special Guests: His highness Alhaji Muhammadu Dan-Ali, District Head of Bardoki Ward

His Highness Alhaji Marafan Gyalenge, District Head of Gyalenge Ward

His Highness Alhaji Hassan Muhammaed Gayari, District Head of Gayari

Hon. Murtala Muhammad, Councilor of Gayari ward.

Hon. Muhammad Sani, Councilor of Gyalenge ward.

Hon. Junaidu Bala, Councilor of Bardoki ward.

Hon. Salisu Garba, Councilor of Gwalli ward.

Hon. Bilyaminu Sani, Councilor of Illela Auwal ward.

Alhaji Hassan Muhammed, District Head of Gayari.

Malam Bello Musa, Director Personal Management of Gusau LG Council.

Malam Yahaya Musa, Chairman, Al-Ihsan Citizens’ Right & Empowerment Initiative, Gummi LG Branch.

Abubakar Abdullahi, C.J Gummi and Chief Imam of Gayari Central Mosque.

The 2nd Gummi town hall meeting, themed “Local People Involvement in the Local Government Affairs and Decision Making Process”, was held to discuss the representation and involvement of village youths in the local governance. The meeting was a conglomeration of five (5) political wards namely Gayari, Gyalenge, Bardoki, Gwalli, and Illela Auwal wards. It was attended by the councilor of each ward, 5 religious leaders (one representing each ward), 3 village heads, other distinguished members of the community as well as representatives of various organizations.

Discussions at the meeting were centered around exclusion and victimization of the youths by the wards in local government matters. Two papers presented at the meeting highlighted the role of the village square in local government administration, challenges of the decision-making process among rural dwellers, and the political rights of citizens as seen through the lens of local government administrative councils. The negative impacts suffered by rural dwellers as a result of been limited from participating in local governance were equally highlighted.

Resolutions reached included an agreement that the local government councilors and other officials must involve rural citizens from all political wards and administrative districts of the area in decision making and budgeting. Similarly, the youths of the villages are to be integrated into the local governance. 

It was equally resolved that town hall meetings be conducted in all other political wards within Gummi LGA and that District Heads should be incorporated to steer discussions and moderate issues presented for the proper conduct of the town hall meetings. Finally, a high-level committee should be set up to work with the local government council chairman in establishing the modalities for measuring the traction of these meetings.

There were 92 participants – 59 men & 33 women.

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Ensuring Active Citizens participation in Local Governance, Tsafe, Zamfara

April 29, 2021 | 1st Tsafe LG Town Hall Meeting | Government Girls Day Secondary School Focal Tsafe LG

Special Guests:  

Representative of  Sole Administrator Tsafe LG, Alhaji Inusa Aliyu Vice Chairman of Tsafe LG

Shu’aibu Nuhu, Citizens Journalist, Tsafe LG.

Mallam Kamal Muhammed, Ameer MSSN Tsafe Area Council

Mallam Huzaipha Na-Mallam, Na’ibul Ameer Studies & Scholarship

The one-day #MyLG meeting town hall meeting held at Tsafe was the first within the local government. The meeting themed, “Ensuring Active Citizens participation in Local Government Governance,” was attended by the Tsafe LG sole administrator representative, ward Councillors, members of youths and women organizations, social media organizations, and many others. The aim of the meeting was to seek ways forward in driving active citizens’ participation in local governance, especially in the areas of policymaking, project tracking, and budgeting.

The meeting provided grounds for issues such as the role citizens play in helping local government drive social and economic development, and the participation of women and the youths in local government, to be extensively discussed.

As the meeting draws to a close, it was resolved that the local government should adopt techniques to engage citizens (especially women and the youths), civic organizations, and community leaders in local governance. Also, the local government was tasked to provide social amenities such as water, feeder roads, electricity, and a market for the community. Emphases were laid on the lack of a drainage system, learning materials for students, access to skill acquisition programs and within the community.

A crucial part of these resolutions was a call to the local government to look into harnessing the mineral resources embedded within the community as a source of income generation. Finally, the needs of the people should be prioritized during budgeting.

There were 55 participants – 35 men & 20 women. 

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Ensuring Active Citizens participation in Local Governance, Maradun, Zamfara

March 29, 2021 | 2nd Maradun LG Town Hall Meeting | Mu’allahyidi Arabic Secondary School, Maradun

Special Guests:  

Mr Aminu Abubakar Sodangi, Supervisory Councillor, Maradun LG

Citizens have a tendency to overlook the affairs of local governments or matters of state governance to concentrate on the bigger picture at the federal level. Yet, governance begins from the government closest to people at the grassroots: the local government.

The second #MyLG town hall meeting in Maradun was attended by the councilors representing Kaya word, Maradun South, Damaga/Gamagiwa, and Dosara/Birnin, Kaya respectively. Also in attendance were representatives of civil society organizations, social media organizations, and many others. The motive of the meeting was themed “Ensuring Active Citizens participation in Local Government Governance,” was to search for different methods of improving citizens’ involvement in local governance, particularly in areas of policy-making, project tracking, implementation, and evaluation.

The meeting’s interactive session saw conversations around the roles of the local government in providing social amenities for the community, the importance of citizens’ participation in budgeting, and techniques to engage the youth.

Resolutions charged the local government to provide birth, death, and marriage registrars within the community, provide social amenities, revamp the local market, assist school children with learning materials in schools as well as maintain law and order. Citizens and people with disabilities (PWD) were encouraged to engage their local government officials from time to time.

There were 58 participants – 43 men & 15 women. 

Nabilu Lawali, Citizen Journalist, Maradun L.G chapter.

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Enhancing Citizen’s Participation in Local Governance, Anka Zamfara State

March 24, 2021 | 2nd Anka LG Town Hall Meeting | Wuya Village square, Anka

Special Guests: His Royal Highness, Dr. Attahir Muhd Ahmad, Emir of Anka. 

Royal Father, Alhaji Attahir Muhd, Head of District, Wuya. 

Alhaji Muhd dodo, Secretary, Anka Emirate Council.

Nasir Garba Anka, Professor of Bioenergy, Biomass & Biofuel, Federal  University Gusau. 

Dr. Suleman Aliyu, Lecturer, Usman Dan Fodio University, Sokoto.

Galadima Ibrahim Muhd, Guest speaker.

Saratu Suleman, CJ Anka LG.

Following the #MyLG project in Zamfara State, the 2nd Anka town hall meeting was held to educate citizens on their constitutional roles, and that of the local government. In attendance were distinguished members of the local government area and other districts. 

The meeting themed, “Enhancing Citizens’ Participation in Local Governance”, provided a platform for discussions around local government accountability, citizen’s political participation, and how attention should be given to budget allocations within the local government, and the importance of ward councils in local government administration.

It was resolved that the local government would engage representatives of local organizations and groups in budget deliberations as well as ensure the participation of women and people with disabilities (PWDs) in governance. Also, it was agreed that a steering committee tasked with keeping the local government abreast on matters of public interest, be established. Citizens were urged to keep in touch with political wards and constantly demand accountability. A final resolution was a request for the inclusion of the #MyLG project in local government programs and budget allocations.

There were 37 participants – 20 men & 17 women.

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ENSURING ACTIVE CITIZENS PARTICIPATION IN MARADUN LG, ZAMFARA STATE

“O God of creation, direct our noble cause. Guide our leaders right; Help our youth the truth to know.”
2nd Stanza of Nigeria’s National Anthem

March 29, 2021 | 2nd Maradun Town Hall Meeting | Aisha Memorial Hall, Mu’allahyidi Arabic Secondary School Maradun

Special Guests: Councilor of Gamaga/Gamagiwa ward, Mubarak Aminu Gama Giwa

Councilor of Kaya ward, Bello Abdulkhadir

Councilor of Dosara/Birnin ward, Shehu Hassan Mancy

Nabilu Lawali, CJ Maradun.

Keeping up with the MyLG project in Zamfara state, the 2nd Maradun local government town hall meeting was held to look for possible ways towards improving citizens’ involvement in Maradun local governance, particularly policy-making, project tracking, implementation, and evaluation.

The meeting titled “Ensuring Active Citizens participation in Local Government Governance” was attended by representatives of the local government administration, representatives of civil societies, and media groups.

Interactions between the local government officials and citizens wove around the active participation of citizens, civil societies, and persons with disabilities (PWD) in governance, provision of birth, death, and marriage registrars for certification, covering the shortage of water supply in the community, provision of necessary social amenities including feeder roads, better market, and support for education within the community.

After hearing views from different participants on how citizens can actively participate in governance, citizens were encouraged to assist good governance by performing civic duties and keeping to law and order.

There were 58 participants – 43 men & 15 women.

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ENHANCING CITIZENS PARTICIPATION IN KAURA NAMODA LG, ZAMFARA STATE

“O God of creation, direct our noble cause. Guide our leaders right; Help our youth the truth to know.”
2nd Stanza of Nigeria’s National Anthem

February 27, 2021 | 1st Kaura Namoda Town Hall Meeting | Kaura Namoda Local Government Secretariat Chamber

Special Guests: The Director of Works, Kaura Namoda LGA, Alh. Umar Moriki

Senior District Head, Kaura Namoda LGA, Alh. Ahmad Isa Umar

Shafa’atu Salihu Labbo, CJ Kaura Namoda.

The local government is the cradle of citizens’ participation in governance. The bond formed at this stage of governance between duty bearers and the people creates the foundation for inclusion and active participation in governance at state and federal levels.

To this end, the 1st Kaura Namoda MyLG town hall meeting, themed “Enhancing Citizens Participation in Local Governance”, was held to create awareness on the importance of citizens’ active engagement in issues affecting their LGA. In attendance were representatives of the local government administration, representatives of political, commercial, and civic organizations, and media personnel.

Speakers encouraged the local government to give priority to the views and opinions of citizens and ensure active participation of civil society organizations and women organizations. Further calls were made for capacity building of youths in Kaura Namoda, autonomy and accountability of the LG finances, protection of lives and properties, and adoption of regular town hall meetings.

In conclusion, representatives of the local government agreed to sensitize citizens on enhanced participation in governance, provide support and collaboration for ongoing projects within the community, and ensure financial autonomy. Citizens were asked to participate more in the local and state governments’ selection and administration processes.

There were 70 participants – 40 men & 30 women.

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