USAID Nigeria State2State Activity Trains Ebonyi MDAs, CSOs and Target LGAs on GESI Mainstreaming

USAID Nigeria State2State Activity Trains Ebonyi MDAs, CSOs and Target LGAs on GESI Mainstreaming

The USAID-funded project in Nigeria; State Accountability, Transparency, and Effectiveness Activity (State2State) engaged gender desk officers from priority ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs) of government, civil society organizations, and target local government areas in Ebonyi state on the need to effectively and properly mainstream gender and social inclusion (GESI) in all government programmes and activities.

This was in a 3-day Gender And Social Inclusion (GESI) Mainstreaming training which held from February 13 to 15, 2023, at the State2State field office in Abakaliki Ebonyi State, Southeast Nigeria. The purpose of the training was to increase the knowledge about GESI mainstreaming and integration in governance and public financial management.

The State2State GESI Specialist, Ejiro Okotie, explained that for us to have a society that is inclusive for all persons, GESI must be mainstreamed and the MDAs have a role to play in achieving that.

Ejiro noted that State2State, as a result of the capacity-building training, now has more people with knowledge that can go out there to advocate for GESI issues and promote inclusiveness in governance reforms.

According to her, the 3 days’ GESI mainstreaming training was necessitated from findings gathered from a GESI assessment conducted in 2022 for 8 MDAs. One of the key findings was that there was a knowledge gap regarding GESI issues. Hence, the need to build the capacity of these stakeholders on how to effectively mainstream GESI in their work.

“For us to have a society that is inclusive for all persons, for us to have a governance process where everybody can participate, it is important to ensure that gender and social inclusion is effectively mainstreamed in everything that the government is doing; be it policies or be it programmes designed by the government and even other stakeholders and CSOs”. She said.

“We need an Ebonyi state that is inclusive for all persons and even in implementing, projects and programs by the government to ensure that these projects deliver adequately for all citizens. One of the things GESI does is that, beyond promoting the values of inclusiveness, it also helps to prevent conflict because people are happy, they can make contributions to the budget that is been developed in their local government. They can also take ownership of the projects executed done by the government.

A key finding from the training was the widening gap in programing for boys and men in Ebonyi and the negative implications this is having on the advancements made on Gender Equality and Women’s rights initiatives. It was highly recommended that there is a need to consider boys’ and men’s programmes in Ebonyi state, as this will support gains recorded so far.

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