By Stanley Onyekwere
The World Bank Assisted Community and Social Development Project (CSDP), in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) has received a boost as the Bank pledged its counterpart fund of about two billion naira to implement the Community based projects in Territory between 2014 –2017.
According to the Bank, out of the said amount, N340 million would be released this year, to strengthen the implementation of the rural development projects in the FCT.
This was disclosed by the World Bank Task Team leader of the CSDP, Professor Foluso Okunmadewa, during a meeting with Board of Directors of the FCT CSDP, held in Abuja, to strengthen on-going partnership between the FCT Administration and the World Bank, to develop FCT rural communities.
Kunmadewa said the project was initiated ten years ago in Nigeria to assist communities lacking basic social amenities like water, electricity and access roads and so on, stressing that “the programme was designed to allow the benefiting communities have a say, contribute and participate in the execution of the projects’’
“Some of the States on the Project are doing well with timely release of their counterpart funds by their Government and implementation of the community-driven development projects.
“FCT Administration only came in late 2013 and the Administration has recorded commendable progress in all the six Area Councils of the FCT. We need to encourage the FCT CSDP through timely release of Funds,” he explained.
Professor Okunmadewa urged the FCTA and other benefiting states to carry out peer review, to enable them compare notes and know where there are gaps and other challenges.
He lauded the World Bank assisted CSDP project, noting that if it was embraced and implemented in the North Eastern Part of the country the problem of insurgency would not have emerged
On his part, chairman of FCT Board of the CSDP, Alhaji Salihu Hussaini Ashara, thanked the World Bank for the support and collaboration, aimed at bringing smiles to faces of the rural dwellers.
He therefore pledged the commitment of the Board to work with the Bank and other stakeholders to implement the project in the FCT.