05 Jul 2011
Government, donors undertake field visit for joint programme
The Government officials and development partners of Local Governance Community Development Programme (LGCDP)comprising of representatives from ADB, DFID, CIDA, Danish embassy, UNDP/UN System and Norwegian embassy undertook a joint field visit to Kailali and Kanchanpur districts. Lead by the Ministry of Local Development (MLD), altogether 17 representatives of different agencies took active part in the visit programme.
The LGCDP Cluster Coordinating Unit in Dhangadi made a brief presentation for the team on the far-west region along with the major achievements as well as key issues and challenges prevailing in the region. The team met with the political parties and staff members followed by a project site visit to get a first hand knowledge from the users committee and beneficiaries about the service delivery and participatory development process.
At the community level, the team visited a Ward Citizen Forum with members from different sections of society especially the poor and disadvantaged, and a Community Awareness Center in which vulnerable groups in the Village Development Committee are identified by participatory poverty assessment approach under social mobilization. The visiting team interacted on different issues related to local governance processes with the community people.
Joint Secretary of MLD, Mr. Teertha Dhakal reviewed the efforts of local bodies (District Development Committees, Village Development Committees and Municipalities) and the Cluster Coordinating Unit and identified the positive changes and improvement needed areas. The review meeting concluded that the recent results of the programme are highly encouraging.
In Daiji, on the way to Kanchanpur, the VDC Secretary, the Social Mobilizers and the Local Service Providers enlightened the team on their work as how social mobilization process has enabled the local communities to begin to take an active role in the local governance processes.
In Kanchanpur, the visiting team was briefed by the local bodies on what they see as the keydevelopment issues for improving service delivery processes in the absence of elected bodies. The visiting team also had the opportunity to observe the seven and half kilometers road project (widening and upgrading) followed by a brief discussion and interaction with the users committee.
The 3 and a half day field visit provided important insights on the progress being made by LGCDP and the benefits that it is beginning to bring to local communities, the disadvantaged and the marginalized groups in particular.
While much remains to be rolled out, the scale and ambition of the national programme appears to be justified on the basis of the evidence gathered from this field visit.