By Miriam Humbe
The House Committee on Constituency Outreach rose from a 2-day retreat which held in Owerri, Imo State aimed to set an agenda and develop its operational work-plan for the year 2020.
The Committee resolved to ensure proper implementation and release of funds for members’ constituency projects in line with the demands of their constituents.
Discussions focused on oversight, constituency projects for inclusive governance, constituency engagement and democratic accountability in Nigeria.
The lawmakers also committed to provide an updated database of constituency projects as allocated in the Appropriation Act annually for ease of monitoring and assessment of constituency projects.
They are to also utilize its powers and mandate to ensure proper education and improve citizens’ understanding of constituency projects and effective ways of engaging lawmakers on constituency project implementation in order to build public trust and promote democratic accountability.
It was also to deploy its oversight powers to ensure that members set up functional constituency offices as statutorily required to enable effective communication between constituents and their representatives and deepen legislative accountability.
The Committee said it is committed to promoting regular engagement between constituents and their representatives to promote inclusive governance.
It will also encourage lawmakers to monitor and ensure the successful implementation of their constituency projects and for ease of identification appropriated constituency projects should labelled as ‘facilitated by’ in place of ‘donated by’.
It will submit reports on the state of constituency offices and constituency projects to the House.
They also resolved to partner with Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) and development partners in the monitoring and tracking of constituency projects and constituency offices.