By Lawrence Nwimo
Civil Rights Concern, a uman rights watchdog, has urged the Anambra state House of Assembly to consider conducting a public hearing on the proposed 2022 budget for the state, www.odogwublog.com reports.
A statement signed by the group Programme Director in the State, Mr Okey Onyeka said it is imperative for the legislative arm to make discussions on the budget open for the people of the state to fully discern what the MDAs in the state have for them as well as to make contributions in the areas of concern to their communities and state.
According to the statement, “The budget is a significant tool to realize the constitutional obligations of government to the citizens especially when supported by good policies. The SDGs are critically touched in terms of human development outcome in health, education and food security and are very vital in budget discussions, interventions and outcomes.
“The House of Assembly is the arrowhead in this regard as the representatives of the people to facilitate discussions through a public hearing so that stakeholders in our socio-economy could understand what the MDs have packaged for them and agree or make more suggestions as it affects them. This makes the budget people-oriented.
“This has become very urgent also as the bilateral discussions where stakeholders intervene in the presentations have become restricted and key stakeholders are no longer part of it.
“We are therefore requesting that the State House of Assembly urgently conduct a public hearing on the proposed 2022 budget to enable the stakeholders in Anambra State to review the budget the executive arm of government is proposing for the citizens.
“This will further democratize budget making and enable the implementation to touch the citizens where they fill most pinched in their livelihoods.”
The group firmly believed that participation in making the Anambra State government budget was largely on community charter of demand. They also maintained that extensive discussions around the process and the content of new government budget had been significant in development programming since the year 2000 in Nigeria and the government sector.