The Community-Choose-Your Project Initiative of the Obiano administration which is currently in its third phase is a testimony that no community in Anambra State can deny not to have benefitted from Obiano’s government. EMEKA CHIAGHANAM writes:
THE infrastructural legacy a leader initiates is a testament to the leader’s frame of mind and quality of life he intends to transmit to his people. What endears posterity to a leader is beyond personality and charisma but his visionary transformational policies.
In Anambra State, Gov. Willie Obiano has made bold and progressive statements with the Community-Choose-Yourself Project. The programme covers all the communities in the state. The first of its kind in Nigeria and dynamic in its simultaneous social and economic benefits to the communities.
The project was initiated in September 2016, as a component of the widely applauded Economic Stimulus Package by the Obiano administration, to inject life into the state communities as a response to the crushing economic recession when most states in the country, reeled under the recession impact. The initiative underscores the drive to develop rural communities while ensuring the growth of the state’s economy as well.
It became an instant success in improving infrastructural development at the grassroots. The scheme has proven to be the best model for rural development.
The Community-Choose-Your-Project is in its third phase under the novel and unprecedented initiative that provides an opportunity for each community in the state the liberty to select a development project which the state government would execute with the sum of N20m.
Under the scheme, the state government provides the specification and ensures the strictest compliance to standards and commitment to the contractual terms of each project.
While each community decides what is best for it, and where to cite the project and supplying the labour that would execute it.
The initiative has redefined governments’ traditional approach to community development effort, which before now, failed to empower local decision making and allow direct control of development resources by communities.
The projects created employment, traders profited from sales of building materials and sundries. Artisans were engaged, and food vendors enjoyed patronage.
The Community-Choose-Your-Project initiative has helped some communities embark on the construction and completion of projects like building of community centres, civic centres, motor parks, civic and refurbishment of schools.
Some communities choose mini stadia abattoirs, town hall buildings, doctors’ quarters, classroom blocks, boreholes, lockup shops and different projects that minister to their specific needs.
While others built hospitals, market stalls and shops, drainage, culverts, classroom blocks and living quarters for doctors, teachers and members of the youth service corp, skill acquisition centres, roads, oil palm and crop processing factories, to erosion control, building of libraries and printing outfits.