CSOs, Media, Others Commend SERI Over VEC/KDN Report

President of SERI, Raymond Onyegu addresses Participants at the VEC/ KDN Report Presentation

President of SERI, Raymond Onyegu addresses Participants at the VEC/ KDN Report Presentation

Stakeholders ranging from civil society organizations, the media and representatives of communities in Enugu State were yesterday unanimous in their commendation of Socio-economic Rights Initiative (SERI) over the objectivity, rigour and high quality of analysis and presentation of its independent assessment of the implementation of the Visit Every Community Key Development Needs (VEC/KDN) projects in Enugu State.

They made the commendations during the Strategy Meeting and Public Presentation of the VEC/KDN Survey Report organized by SERI at Sunshine Hotels and Guest Houses Limited, Enugu. The Survey itself was an extension of the Demand-Driven (Participatory) Budget Program which SERI is implementing in South East Nigeria. The Program mobilizes citizens as individuals and communities to, in response to their needs and concerns, propose their own remedial intervention (projects) to be integrated into government’s budgets.

The event which was attended by the Chairman of the Governing Board of SERI, Eze (Dr) Dom Okoro was the climax of an extensive work that started in 2014 and was an opportunity for stakeholders to once again engage in a frank appraisal of the development agenda and the catalystic role that civil societies, mediating between the government and the governed, can play in it.

Earlier in his welcome address, the President and Chief Executive Officer of SERI, Barrister Raymond Onyegu, gave a detailed account of SERI and its work, right from its beginnings in Lagos in 1995 up to the relocation of its head office to Enugu a few years back, noting that Economic Governance Program of SERI under which the Survey was carried out was the main component of SERI’s economic, social and cultural (ESC) rights protection and promotion mandate.

The VEC/KDN Survey involved the assessment of the implementation status of the 1888 projects under the scheme in the 472 communities in Enugu State. The findings of the Survey are contained the 172 page report published by SERI.