Gov. Willie Obiano of Anambra has set aside N3.58 billion for the launch of the third phase of the Community-Choose-Your-Project Initiative for each of the 179 communities in the state.
The state Commissioner for Information and Public Enlightenment, Mr C-Don Adinuba made the disclosure in a statement made available to newsmen on Sunday.
Adinuba, who said Obiano had already set aside N3.58 billion for the project, noted that each community would unanimously decide the project to be sited in their respective domains.
“The Anambra Government will inform the President-Generals and traditional rulers in the 179 communities in the state and other stakeholders that it is about to launch the third phase of the N20 million Community-Choose-Your-Project Initiative.
“Communities, which are yet to complete the second phase will, however, not participate in the third phase.
“The government observes that only 78 communities have completed the second phase and are, therefore, ready to start new development projects in the third phase,” he said.
The commissioner expressed concern that only about 50 per cent of communities have yet to finish the second phase on account of communal politics and squabbles.
According to him, the internal politics and squabbles are slowing down the progress of not only the affected communities but also the entire state.
Adinuba appealed to all President-Generals of various town unions, traditional rulers and other stakeholders in the communities to ensure that their communities are not left behind.
“The Anambra Government is in a hurry to develop all communities in the state.
“We call upon the community leaders to resolve their problems immediately and complete the second phase of the Community-Choose-Your-Project Initiative.
“The people and government of Anambra are proud of this initiative that has brought concrete development to every community and which has been copied by some other states,” he said.
He explained that the Community-Choose-Your-Project Initiative was an unprecedented community development strategy by the state government.
Adinuba further said communities were also allowed to choose a contractor, who must come from the area while the government provides the resources.
The commissioner disclosed that most communities chose libraries, civic centres, health centres, markets and water boreholes, among other infrastructure for development.
“The strategy has earned praise from researchers and development experts as a perfect example of the bottom-top approach to development which is recommended in the democratic setting.
“This is opposed to the traditional top-down style which sees top government officials decide projects for communities without bothering to find out what the communities actually want or need,” he said.