North East Regional Initiative (NERI)

Project Background:

Adamawa in the North East geopolitical zone remains one of the most challenged of the six states in the geopolitical zone in Nigeria. This is true of its human development indices and the insurgency and insecurity resulting from the killing and maiming of thousands, displacement of others and destruction of houses, markets, schools, farmlands, sacking of entire villages and impoverishment of entire households. The weak structure of civil society has also resulted in bad governance, weak institutions, citizens’ exclusion, poverty, low standards of living and relatively little ineffective civil society engagement.

These interrelated challenges have combined to entrench high levels of deprivation, illiteracy, poverty, unemployment, social exclusion and reinforce the vicious cycle of ignorance, lack of political awareness, bad governance, lack of accountability, absence of people oriented development and participatory processes, low realization of basic, economic, social and cultural rights. These have in turn resulted in citizens’ discontent, poverty, youth idleness and vulnerability to manipulation and exploitation. The result of is the evolution of political thuggery that has largely escalated to the insurgency that has fuelled the insecurity in the region which has resulted in the death of thousands, abductions of hundreds and internal displacements of hundreds of thousands.

In the meanwhile, semblance of normal governance has returned to Adamawa State where successful elections were conducted in a peaceful process.  Even though other communities in in the region have had to cope with the influx of internally displaced persons and the Federal Government, in collaboration with the Private Sector and Development Partners already have initiatives and interventions to mobilize resources for rehabilitation, reconstruction and resettlement are already underway. For instance, the Presidential Initiative for the North East (PINE) introduces a 5-billion-naira (US$31 million) intervention programme which Adamawa will largely benefit from. CISLAC has also received several inquiries from international partners like the USAID to support CSO engagement in the region.

CISLAC remains convinced that a strong, well informed and vibrant civil society Adamawa State is necessary to ensure effective mobilization, sensitization, education and enlightenment for  citizens so that they can engage effectively to promote good governance, transparency and accountability in the reconstruction process, as well as, engage in peace-building efforts and resettlement thereby contributing to the restoration of peace, hope and confidence in the people and empowering them to participate meaningfully as stakeholders in governance and the management of resources for the general good.

CISLAC with the support of NERI will identify, build capacities and engage 50 groups whose concept aligns with NERI’s focal areas in institutional capacity building, undertaken minimal mentorship support, establish a dedicated drop in resource centre that will be available for CSOs and train and strengthen capacities of selected organizations to strengthen finance and administrative system that will help identified organizations in undertaking activities. These groups, having benefitted from the interventions have become more focused, strategic and result oriented. The graduate from this intervention will have dedicated access to a resource centre that will allow for easy access to information gathering, use and storage. The programmatic, project monitoring, organizational and monitoring and evaluation skills will improve and several of them will step down the knowledge acquired and commenced extended mentorship programmes of their own facilitated by CISLAC with support from NERI.

They will be encouraged to also develop improved intra state collaboration and networking. It is therefore necessary to both reach out to the excluded of groups in the region and expose them to capacity development using a robust module developed under similar project in the outgoing year.

Proposed Intervention:        

The Civil Society Legislative Advocacy Centre proposes to implement a set of activities that will achieve the purpose of strengthening the capacities of CSOs in Adamawa State. These interventions seeks to impart knowledge and identified skill sets and increase the number  of groups across the region that are able to effectively engage, to achieve maximum impact and contribute to creating the needed change.

Project Goal:

Our overall goal is to strengthen the capacities of CSOs in Adamawa state and position them to employ best practices in their operations and build the necessary information resource base to effectively mobilize citizens and engage other relevant stakeholders for bringing about change and effectively engage the governments to address the socio economic and political challenges peculiar to and confronting the states in the zone.

Project Objectives:

  • To identify CSOs in Adamawa State along relevant thematic areas and issues of Engagement
  • To promote the emergence of more internally strong, issue based, focused and well managed CSOs in Adamawa state of Nigeria
  • To support CSOs in Adamawa State Nigeria with specific requisite skill needed for effective engagement of the relevant officials for good governance, rehabilitation and community cohesion.
  • To improve the quality and access to information of CSO groups active in Adamawa State of Nigeria

Method by which the goal will be achieved:

  • Identify and secure suitable space for the establishment of a resource centre/office and hiring of (4) four capable hands that will be part of the process from the beginning.
  • Equip resource centre with computers, internet, journals, books, furniture and other learning aids.
  • Training Modules developed for CSOs from previous engagement reviewed
  • Institutional Capacity Building Sessions for selected CSOs in various aspects of CSO operations and engagement
  • Training for select for CSOs on select areas of active engagements with state and non-state actors
  • Official launch of drop in resource centre that will be available for CSOs to develop and increase access to sources of credible information.
  • Training for CSOs on the use of computers and IT equipment in the resource centre