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From Abba Kabara

The Nigeria Country Director of the Coalition for Maternal, Child, Newborn and Adolescent Health Accountability in Nigeria (C4MAN), Dr. Ejike Orji has reiterates that budgets could never be realistic without public participation right from preparation to implementation.

In view of its significance to development, Dr. Orji urges civil society organizations in the country to get more involved in budget processes from the beginning to assist in meeting citizens expectations.

He made this call Monday at the opening of a one-day C4MAN end of year meeting in Abuja.

He noted that budget tracking is imperative and could only be made realistic when stakeholders participate in proposals, public hearing, release and implementation.

The Dr. was represented at the meeting by an official of the coalition Dr. Tunde Segun who also suggests that stakeholder participation, particularly in public hearing, could monitor the sources of expected revenue and strengthen the will for its implementation to ensure funds allocation as expected.

He said similar town hall meetings should be encouraged to sensitize communities at the rural level to participate in what priority areas that have a direct bearing on them such as good health care coverage and delivery as it affects women and children in the country.

The nine C4MAN intervention states of Jigawa, Kaduna, Kano, Katsina, Zamfara, Yobe, Bauchi, Lagos, and Gombe were present at the meeting.

Representatives from development partners supporting the programme include Evidence for Action, Pathfinder International, EGCF, HERFON, PRESTON, Integrated Health Project and Development Research Project Center.

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