*to monitor utilisation of UBEC’s funds
By; UANGBAOJE ALEX, Kaduna
As part measures to ensure effective management and utilisation of the School Improvement (SIP), funds being provided by the Universal Basic Education (UBEC), for four Local Government Areas (LGAs) in Kaduna State, an NGO, Connected Development (CODE), on Monday commenced training of School-Based Management Committees (SBMCs), in the benefitting LGAs.
At the opening of the training in Kafanchan, CODE, pledged to effectively monitor the disbursement and utilisation of the funds for SIP in four Local Government Areas (LGAs), in the State.
The Chief Executive Officer of the NGO, Mr Hamzat Lawal made this known at the opening of a one-day training for SBMCs and School Monitoring Team in Jema’a LGA.
Universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC) has recently announced the release of N2.8 billion for the SBMC–SIP.
The SBMC-SIP is a school improvement strategy where a community, initiate a self-help project that will be implemented by the SBMC with funding support from UBEC, after initial provision of 10 per cent cost.
Lawal, who was represented by state’s Lead, Miss Zaliha Lawal, explained that UBEC would soon disburse the SIP funds to SMBCs in the state for school maintenance and other development projects.
According to him, CODE will be on ground to ensure effective utilisation of the funds through vigorous monitoring and tracking of spending by the SBMCs.
“But to start with, the SBMCs and our School Monitoring Team must be train on the SIP Fund Ecosystem and Management, to improve their knowledge of the SIP Fund value-chain, selection and disbursement.
“They will also be train on fund management; monitoring and public oversight; needs assessment’ guidelines for resource mobilisation and communication channels.
“This will deepen their understanding of the programme, how to develop proposal to access and efficiently utilise the funds to achieve the purpose it was meant for.
“It will also enhance the capacity of the SBMCs for effective monitoring of school improvement projects to ensure value for money.”
Lawal said that the training, which would be extended to Zangon Kataf, Kajuru and Kudan LGAs would be conducted under CODE’s three-year tracking of UBEC funds on basic education in Kaduna state.
He said that the tracking activities which was in its second year was being funded by the MacArthur Foundation to ensure transparency and accountability in government spending to curb corruption.
Also speaking, the Education Secretary of the LGA, Mr Nathaniel Maude, thanked CODE for the laudable step towards increasing the capacity of the SBMCs to access the fund and utilised it efficiently.
Maude, who was represented by the Head of Department, Human Resource, Mrs Leah Hashimu, explained that the SBMC-SIP programme would enhance the functionality of the SBMCs in school development.
He also said that the programme would also increase school infrastructure and learning environment and equally improve school enrolment, retention and completion rate of the pupils.
The SBMC Chairman in the LGA, Mr Zamani Abu, commended UBEC for strengthening community engagement in the delivery of basic education through the SBMCs.
Abu, who thanked CODE for the capacity building, noted that community participation would improve the delivery of quality and accessible education in the country.
He assured the NGO that the SMBCs would do everything possible to access the fund to improve school infrastructure and learning environment to deliver quality education to children.