The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) on Wednesday rolled out a new State Accountability and Effectiveness activity, named “State-2-State” to strengthen good governance in subnational systems in six key states across Nigeria.
The five-year programme would be funded with a $72 million financing to help improve how the benefiting states would plan and budget, raise revenues, increase civil society participation, and oversee service delivery in the health, education and water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) sectors.
The activity will begin operations in Adamawa, Akwa Ibom, Bauchi, Ebonyi, Gombe and Sokoto states and later expand to others.
Organizers said although State2State would work primarily at the state level, it would also support federal institutions and local government areas by strengthening government processes like public financial management and procurement; monitoring and evaluation related to the delivery of services; increasing responsiveness to citizen priorities; and improving capacity to manage societal conflict through prevention, mitigation and reconciliation.
“The scale and scope of the State2State activity is a potent symbol of the U.S. government’s commitment to partner with Nigeria to improve governance,” Ambassador Leonard said at the virtual launch ceremony.
“We have made this sizable commitment because we believe dramatic improvements sometimes require considerable resources,” USAID said in Abuja.
One of three State governors who participated in the virtual launch ceremony, David Umahi of Ebonyi State said “State2State promises to increase accountability, transparency, and effectiveness while building on locally derived solutions, including expanding reforms that have proven effective in other parts of the country.
“There’s no doubt that we need the support of development partners to improve and sustain delivery of critical services,” said “State2State has come to Ebonyi at an important time, and I assure you that we will collaborate with this activity to ensure that it succeeds.”
Implemented by DAI in partnership with key Nigerian organizations, the activity will capture, document, and share best practices – working with partner states to make more information available to citizens and relevant institutions.