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Vanimo/Green LLG members get Budget Tracking training

"Information is power and this training is empowering all our Councilors, Presidents, youth and women representatives in the Vanimo/Green electorate to make a commitment for change in our Local Level Government (LLG) wards." 

This was expressed by participant Ignatius Wunum, a former public servant and community development advocator at the closing of the three day Budget Tracking Initiative workshop in Vanimo last week (10/01/2014).

The training was conducted by the Budget sectoral Committee of the Consultative Implementation & monitoring Council (CIMC). All thirty five participants including Local Level Government (LLG) Presidents, Councilors, Council Managers, Youth and Women representatives also described the training as a “eye opener for them to develop their LLG wards and demand for improved services.

Most participants said they had never been privy to the information and had taken for granted the reasons presented to them by government and political leaders when district development projects were never undertaken. Elected Councilors and people from a cross section of the society attending the workshop were grateful to CIMC for providing crucial information which now positioned them to understand their roles and the processes followed to ensure service delivery.

Participants hinted that being empowered by the information they would attempt to put a stop to past occurrences that had denied them basic services due to lack of information. Ward Councillors and Presidents at the workshop were told that a major task for ward development committees was to identify needs of the community, formulate ward plans, budget for them and submit with costings to the LLG President for further deliberation for implementation.

The training highlighted the roles and responsibilities of various provincial and national representatives as constituted by law and what the principle function of each provincial government was. Participants were also given snap shots of the composition of the Joint Provincial and Budget Priorities Committee (JPP &BPC) including their roles and responsibilities which includes controlling budget allocation priorities for the provinces.

This CIMC initiative is intended to equip participants with information that will assist them understand basic elements of the Structures, Systems and Processes of how development grants are made available, used and reported on. The training also includes information about annual budgetary processes and allocation of funds by governments for rural development in provinces, districts and LLGs including how people can measure results of grants appropriated.

Other information presented included the types of funds and grants made available for Provincial Services Improvement Programs (PSIP), District Services Improvement Programs (DSIP) and Local Level Government Services Improvement Programs (LLGSIP) and their administrative guidelines and Finance Instruction regarding procuring of these funds. Key among their priorities are that they draw up a rolling five-year development plan and annual budget estimates for the province and conduct annual reviews of the rolling five-year development plan as required.

This is in line with the spirit of the Joint District Planning & Budget Priorities Committee (JDP & BPC) to promote bottom up planning with each LLG plan reflecting the needs and priorities of individual communities through sensible appropriation of funds at the district level. At the closing participants called for the training to be supported by appropriate government agencies for it to be conducted in all LLGs in the province and elsewhere.

 

 Workshop participants with certificate of participation at the closing of the three day workshop with CIMC facilitator Elizabeth Avaisa (front right)

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