ISBN: 978-978-50222-2-3 2012
The Millennium Development Goals (MDG’s) consisting of 8 goals, 18 targets and 48 indicators were agreed upon by the government of the world in the year 2000. These have set priorities for international development. The MDGs are currently the highest-level expression of the international community’s development priorities. They commit the international community to an action agenda which emphasizes sustainable human development as the key to attaining socio-economic program. For about 13 years since its inception, analysis indicates that there is still progress to be made if the 2015 MDGs benchmark is to be met in Nigeria.
Even though Nigeria is making progress on the MDGs, variations from state to state still hamper achieving success. While different stakeholders have targeted actions at realizing the ultimate aim of the MDGs, there are still identified barriers towards the achievement of the 2015 MDGs benchmark in the country. These includes untimely budget allocation, bureaucratic nature of offices which makes it difficult to get targeted audience during stakeholders meeting, non-inclusion of the Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) in the appropriation, oversight and monitoring of MDG projects, weak multi-sectorial approach leading to duplication of efforts, poor policy implementation, corruption, poor support and lack of empowerment to female political aspirants toto participate in politics, lack of reliable system for collecting, planning and development of data. Also, the effect of climate change has been identified as a threat to efforts to eradicate poverty, hunger and human development.
The non-involvement of the CSOs in the MDGs is due to the misconception accorded to the MDGs, suspicion among some CSOs that the MDGs is simply another short-term whim, lack of support to step up their efforts further even to work towards the MDGs. Another reason why the CSOs are less involved in making the MDGS a priority is lack of documentation, as they do not always possess necessary research, data gathering and analysis and documentation skills to engage in activities around the MDGs.
The basis for effective engagement of the CSOs in MDGs is improvement on reliable and timely information as research is needed to provide accurate, consistent and disaggregation data and information to track progress towards the MDGs and impacts on different social groups.
The importance of the MDGs to the CSOs cannot be overemphasized as the they can act as a set of performance measures against which CSOs can assess and compare their development efforts, great tool for exacting public accountability and lobbying governments and donors to increase efforts and resources towards reducing poverty, rallying tool at regional and international levels, basis for consolidating legitimacy amongst others.
According to the Nigeria’s countdown strategy document, improving governance and accountability, strengthening coordination and cooperation among the three tiers of governments, mobilizing and committing all key stakeholders to the MDGs, and ensuring effective mainstreaming of the MDGs into overall national and sub-national development visions and plans are the country’s roadmap for achieving the MDGs.
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