Civil Society engagement must for effective project implementation : Activists
Dhaka 29 September 2021:
In a seminar, MPs [Member of the Parliament], CSOs (Civil Society Organization) and expert have demanded for a legal frame for Civil Society engagement in development project implementation.
They also opined that government top down planning strategy in fact a hinder of civil society engagement. That’s why sustainable development would hardly be achieved through our existing development planning and implementation paradigm. The seminar is organized by a network of COAST Foundation, CSRL [Center for Sustainable Rural Livelihood].
Asheq Ullah Rafiq MP Cox’s Bazar-2 has participated as Chief Guest. Seminar was moderated by Rezaul Karim Chowdhury from COAST and Ziaul Hoque Mukta of CSRL, where Sayeda Rubina Akter, MP, Women Seat 28, Gloria Jharna Sarker, MP, Women Seat 30 participated as special guest.
Dr. Rezaul Houqe Management Director –BCCT, (Bangladesh Climate Change Trust) Md. Shamsuddoha, Chief Executive, CPRD, Md. Masum , CDP, Md. Bazlur Rahaman, BNNRC, Nikhil Chandra Vadra, Coastal Protection Movement, Mr.Aminur Rasul Babul have participated and spoke.
The key note presented by Syed Aminul Hoque from COAST.
In a key note presentation, Aminul Hoque of COAST said that, Government giving thousands of development projects every year those are unable to ensue effective monitoring by IMED [Internal Monitoring & Evaluation Division]. In this context, civil society engagement during project implementation and monitoring could increase their quality and effectiveness that is proved at present.
Government can learn and develop a built-in framework in the project development phase that facilitate civil society engagement with regular & systematic monitoring and reporting mechanism to local government and respective ministries. He proposed two major demand on this issue. I.e. A legal framework through parliamentary process to make obligatory for all ministries & development authorities to engage civil society while they develop and implement their project. (ii) Government can develop a parliamentary oversight monitoring mechanism with local representatives on the implementing projects and (iii). Local government [district and upazila administration] should be made as mandatory to hold public hearing periodically on ongoing implementation and their progress.
Asheq Ullah Rafiq MP said that the civil society is the fourth eye of any country that aware government on any irregularities, ensure accountability and transparency. We should strengthen this stake with proper law and regulatory framework.
Dr. Rezaul Hoque opined that there are lot of challenges to be face in integrating civil society with project implementation monitoring. But this initiative is very good and prospect in future we have to work more on this issue.
Md. Bazlur Rahaman opine there have many government formed standing committee at local level to work and monitoring on the local implementing projects. We have to need a better coordination with them to strengthen other civil society mechanism.
Advocate Alamgir Hossain from Rangpur said government official and local contractor do not welcome civil society engagement in project implementation monitoring. This has been happening due to lack of legal framework.
Rezaul Karim Chowdhury opined government will have to focus more to strengthen their institutional monitoring capacity by deploying more human resources according the volume of project implementation. Civil Society will be a supportive and complementary forces to make them effective.