By Isiyaku Ahmed, Kano
In a one-day webinar dialogue titled “The Distribution of Palliatives in Kano State: How Transparent and Accountable”? was organized by the African Center for Transparency and Anticorruption Advocacy (Afric-taad) in Kano, stakeholders called for a more robust, transparent and accountable strategy for covid-19 palliative distribution in Kano State.
The Executive Director, Afri-taad, Auwal Isma’il said the event is one of his organization’s strategy for engaging stakeholders to discuss issues of concern to the public, create awareness and ensure entrenchment of the culture of probity, transparency and accountability in the system.
The meeting featured Dr Kabiru Said Sufi as moderator, Comrade Kabiru Said Dakata, Executive Director, Center for Awareness and Justice Accountability (CAJA), Hajiya Nafisa Ahmad, Express Radio and Saifullahi Abdullahi, Kano State Public Complaints and Anti-Corruption Commission (PCACC) as panelists with 27 participants representing different civil society organizations (CSOs) in Kano.
Some observations raised during the meeting includes the non-inclusion of CSOs and people with special needs in the membership of Kano State Committee on covid-19 palliatives, PCACC is investigating alleged corrupt practices involving politicians and traditional rulers for diverting the palliatives meant for the vulnerable people in the state.
Kano Civil Society Forum had offered recommendations and formed committees to support the process, still, there was huge communication gap between the palliatives committee and the general public.
The communique also stated that government did not reveal sources of money or give account of how much was used or who procured the palliatives, and how much the palliatives cost per beneficiary?
For improvement, transparent and accountable covid-19 palliative distribution, the stakeholders recommended that government should ensure proper consultation with CSOs and other stakeholders to aid the planning process and ensure inclusion and proper coordination; there should also be a functional structure at the community level that allows for transparency and flow of the palliatives to the beneficiaries.
CSOs and PCACC should track not only government’s distribution of the palliatives but that of other coalition and networks receiving donations for onward distribution to the general public. And any corrupt practice in the process should be reported to PCACC.
The stakeholder also recommended that PCACC should share information on the amount of money spent, and the progress made on the trial 0f corruption related offenses pertaining to the distribution of covid-19 palliatives.