2017 in Review

In 2017, LITE-Africa implemented a number of high impact programs including National Initiative for Sustainable Peace-building Architecture (NISPA), Monitoring and evaluation of social investment program, Promoting Effective Niger Delta Institutions through Improved Social Accountability (PENDISA). WE also continued our promotion of respect for human rights through the propagation of the VPS. On a sad note, two staffers were also involved in a ghastly vehicle accident which ultimately led to the death of one staff. His memory would forever remain in our thoughts.

As part of the NISPA action, hundreds of women leaders had improved skills on Conflict Transformation and non violent mechanism for resolving conflict. Media practitioners that participated in the conflict sensitivity trainings organised by LITE-Africa under the project now apply their newly acquired skills in responsive journalism, which has helped to deescalate the tension in conflict prone areas. The action was able to draw critical stakeholders-herdsmen and farmers, ex-militants, government officials including security agencies and community leaders to dialogue on the root causes and developed mutually acceptable solutions to end the occurrence and re-occurrence of violent conflict and other forms of insecurity affecting their lives. Critical stakeholders constituted themselves into an Agents for Peace Group (APG) who have continued to identify security and conflict early warning signs to get appropriate response from relevant agencies.

We have continued to promote the VPs in Nigeria and to ensure the adherence and successful implementation of the VPs by fostering dialogue and collaboration between multiple stakeholders including local communities. This year under the VPI we successfully trained over 400 security personnel on Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights. We also contributed to the promotion and implementation of the VPS on the global stage including participation at the annual plenary in Bogota, Columbia.

LITE-Africa also commenced a monitoring and evaluation of a number of corporate social responsibility projects donated by CNL and its Agbami partners to various schools and hospitals across Nigeria. It is expected to inform corporate social investment programs to improve the standard and quality of education and reduce the burden of TB in communities.

On a sad note, this year LITE-Africa as a whole was thrown into mourning because a Senior Programme Staff, Chinyere Ihekaibe, finally yielded to the cold hands of death after battling for several months to survive deep injuries sustained during a ghastly motor accident on Abuja-Kaduna expressway.

Through the advocacy effort of LITE-Africa on the PENDISA project, OSOPADEC has increased transparency and accountability mechanisms by developing a fully functional website that is open to the public and is regularly updated.

LITE-Africa also facilitated a multi-stakeholder dialogue on peace and security architecture in the federal capital territory which drew critical stakeholder from south-south, south-east, and north central communities that were emerging from some of the worst forms of violent conflicts. The peace architecture dialogues brought together policy makers, security agencies, community leaders, traditional leaders, non-state armed groups, professional bodies, herdsmen and farmers, ex-militants as well as women and other marginalized groups to confront common security challenges and proffer mutual solutions to the range of inter-communal violence and herdsmen/ crop farmers conflict.

 KEY PROGRAMMES IN 2017 

  1. GOVERNANCE AND HUMAN RIGHTS
  • PENDISA: Promoting Effective Niger Delta Institutions through Improved Social Accountability
  • NISPA: National Initiative for Sustainable Peace-building Architecture (NISPA) action
  • GMOU signing between SPDC, government and Ohaji/Egbema and Assa North
  • NAGOND (National coalition for Oil and Gas in Niger Delta)
  1. PRIVATE SECTOR ENGAGEMENT (PRISED)
  • VPSHR
  • CNL M&E: CNL MONITORING AND EVALUATION PROJECT
  • D-HEAT:

 Promoting Effective Niger Delta Institutions through Improved Social Accountability (PENDISA II)

The project, ‘Promoting Effective Niger Delta Institutions through Improved Social Accountability (PENDISA II) is part of the ‘Strengthening Advocacy and Civic Engagement’ (SACE) programme funded by both United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and Partnership Initiative in the Niger Delta (PIND). Some of the activities in the project are co-implemented with ANEEJ. This is the second phase of the project which builds on the successes of the first phase. PENDISA II aims; 

  1. To enhance the capacity of community CSOs to advocate and engage Niger Delta institutions
  2. To improve engagement between Niger Delta institutions and communities on good governance and inclusive socio-economic development
  • To create awareness on transparency and accountability mechanisms for engaging Niger Delta institutions among stakeholders
  1. Secure the buy-in of NDDC new management to CSOs effort, to support the commissions project monitoring framework
  2. To follow-up on the successes recorded with NDDC to ensure the functionality of the Independent CSOs Project Monitoring Committee.
  3. To support the Independent CSOs Project Monitoring Committee to undertake extensive project monitoring and generate reports which will be used to interface with NDDC and the public.

This second phase was executed in all 9 states in the Niger Delta region. As a result of the project, Community-led GMoU structures were also equipped with advocacy skills, and transparency and accountability tools to engage NDIs and create public awareness campaigns on the mandate of the NDIs. The engagement between civil society, GMoU communities and NDIs is expected to lead to more transparent and accountable institutions working for economic growth and development of the region

  1. Secure the buy-in of NDDC new management to CSOs effort, to support the commissions project monitoring framework
  2. To follow-up on the successes recorded with NDDC to ensure the functionality of the Independent CSOs Project Monitoring Committee.

To further strengthen and ensure the functionality of the inaugurated joint NDDC & CSOs independent project monitoring committee. LITE Africa engaged the new management of NDDC to secure their buy-in and follow-up on the successes recorded in the previous years. It is expected that these engagements would lead to policy reforms and improved transparency and accountability in project implementations in the coming years.

Finally, through the advocacy efforts of LITE-Africa on the PENDISA project, OSOPADEC has increased transparency and accountability mechanisms by developing a fully functional website that is open to the public and is regularly updated.

National Initiative for Sustainable Peace-building Architecture (NISPA) action

National Initiative for Sustainable Peace-building Architecture (NISPA) funded by European Union, coordinated by the Economic Communities of West African States (ECOWAS) is an intervention designed to strengthen peace and security in Nigeria.

The 10-month action was implemented in three states of Nigeria, including Benue, Delta and Enugu States respectively due to the prevalence of herders/farmers conflict and renewed militancy.

The overall objective of the Action was to support local and cross-border community dialogue/peace building initiative and training that links local initiatives (especially on women’s initiatives) through Civil Society Organizations to ECOWAS peace and security agenda.

This overall objective was supported by three specific programme objectives:

  • To increase the engagement of CSOs in 3 states in peace building initiatives that link local initiatives to ECOWAS activities in the areas of dialogue, mediation, facilitation and preventive diplomacy.
  • To improve women Leaders’ participation in local decision making and peace building process.
  • To enhance collaboration and communication between security agencies and communities, and local farmers and herdsmen, in peace building initiatives in the targeted states.

The action was able to draw critical stakeholders-herdsmen and farmers, ex-militants, government officials including security agencies, community leaders to dialogue on causes and developed mutually acceptable solutions to end the occurrence and re-occurrence of violent conflict and other forms of insecurity affecting their lives.

Through the town hall meetings held during the implementation of the action, stakeholders were able to identify salient issues and propose realistic solution to the issues that aggravate violent conflicts between herdsmen and farmers on one hand, and the resurgence of militancy on the other hand.

The action was able to enhance the capacity of twelve CSOs in the action states to engage more in peace building initiatives in the areas of dialogue, mediation facilitation and preventive diplomacy. Again, the action was able to improve the capacity of women leaders’ participation in local decision making and peace building process as a result of their participation in the conflict transformation training.

The action brought about the training and engagement of community leaders and key stakeholders in conflict sensitive communication and conflict transformation. It has increased the acceptance of non-violent methods of conflict resolution by the participants, and also provided a platform for herdsmen and farmers, ex-militant and non-militant youth to constructively discuss security issues to enhance peace and security.  In addition, progress was made in enhancing collaboration between communities and security agencies for early warning systems and response mechanisms to prevent violence before it escalates through the formation of two peace advocacy groups.

Finally, the action was able to bring Federal government officials including the Special Adviser to the President on Niger Delta Affairs and Coordinator of the Presidential Amnesty Programme and others to a national conference to dialogue on peace and security issues in Nigeria. This conference developed a national roadmap on national violent conflict contained in communique and which also serves as a policy advocacy tool for further engagement with relevant authorities.

CNL MONITORING AND EVALUATION PROJECT

Chevron Nigeria Limited and her Agbami partners (Star Deep Waters Petroleum Limited) engaged the services of LITE-Africa to assess its projects in education and health, especially Science Laboratories, libraries (traditional and hybrid) and chest clinics, spread across the country.  The goals of the projects are to improve the standard and quality of education of the students in the benefiting schools through developed reading culture; improve academic performance of students in science subjects and reduce the burden of TB in the communities served by the chest clinics.

LITE-Africa’s strategy for the project implementation includes collating baseline data for new projects, performance measurement and monitoring on the 1st and 2nd years and evaluation on post 3-years deployment. The baseline survey covered 10 projects in nine states, while performance measurement and monitoring on the 1st and 2nd years spanned nine projects in nine states. The evaluation on post 3-years deployment would be carried out on 45 projects located in 28 states of the federation.

LITE-Africa opted for Precede-Proceed model to appraise these projects. The model is touted to be a cost–benefit evaluation framework that can help health program planners, policy makers and other evaluators analyse situations and design health programs efficiently.

Between April and May 2017, LITE-Africa staff went to the field where they carried out baseline assessments on three hybrid libraries, five science laboratories and two chest clinics in Abia, Bayelsa, Delta, Edo, Enugu, Ebonyi, Kogi, Kwara and Zamfara States.

From June to August 2017, LITE-Africa carried out performance measurement and monitoring assessment on three Hybrid libraries, (Edo, Ondo and Lagos), three Science laboratories (Benue, Niger and Ogun) and three Chest Clinics (Akwa-Ibom, Enugu and Katsina,) States respectively, donated by Chevron Nigeria Limited and her Agbami partners (Star Deep Water Petroleum Limited).

The performance measurement and monitoring report provides reliable data that is useful for comparing the impact of projects implemented over a period of time and based on the findings there have been remarkable improvements in the performance of students in the external exams. The assessment also discovered that TB cure rate were positively impacted.

NEWS

Two LITE- Africa Staff Involved in Motor Accident

Tragedy struck on May 4, 2017 when two LITE-Africa staff were involved in a ghastly motor accident along Kaduna-Abuja expressway. They included, Associate Programme Manager, Austen Bisina and Senior Programme Officer, Chinyere Ihekaibe.

The accident occurred as they were returning from a field trip in Gusau, Zamfara State capital, where they conducted a baseline survey on social investment programs in the health sectors.

 

 LITE- Africa Mourns

The management and staff of LITE-Africa were on  August 4, 2017, thrown into mourning when the news filtered into the office that a Senior Programme Staff, Chinyere Ihekaibe, finally yielded to the cold hands of death after battling for several months to survive deep injuries sustained during a ghastly motor accident on Kaduna-Abuja expressway.

The deceased and Austen Bisina, were returning from official assignment in Zamfara State when the accident happened in which a female passenger died on the spot, while the duo and the driver of the vehicle sustained various degrees of injuries.

The victims who were in critical conditions were immediately rushed to Abuja Specialist Hospital, for medical treatments where Chinyere spent some months on sick bed before being transferred to the University of Benin Teaching Hospital, Edo State, for further treatment before he finally gave up the ghost.

Fondly called Ajie by the staff and friends alike, Chinyere was an epitome of diligence, a conscientious staff and a pillar of support and strength to his family.

The Executive Director, Joel Bisina, described his passage to the great beyond as a rude shock to the organization.

The Executive Director in a statement said the late Ihekaibe was a pillar of support and strength to his family and left a legacy in the development world that will always speak about him.

‘’Although you are gone, you will always remain evergreen in our hearts. Our thoughts and prayers are with the deceased’s wife, children and the entire Ihekaibe family at this trying time and we offer them our condolences.

‘’We only take solace in the fact that he lived a worthy life and significantly contributed to uplifting humanity through the various programs he handled.’’

The service of songs for Mr. Chinyere Ihekaibe took place on August 17, 2017 at St. Jude Catholic Church, Effurun GRA by 5.00 pm., while his remains was laid to rest on August 25, 2017 at High Chief Ihekaibe Elendu’s compound, Umuolia Agbo Obayi, Ovim in Isuikwuato LGA of Abia State.

He joined LITE-Africa as a Youth corps member in 2009 and has worked passionately on several high impact development projects.

May his gentle soul rest in peace! Amen!

CNL GMOU: EGCDF and Keffes RDF

LITE – Africa also provides mentorship to two RDCs; EGCDF and Keffes under the CNL GMOU and this mentorship is still on going.

VPSHR

General VP activities in 2017

LITE-Africa participated in a number of Voluntary Principles Initiative steering committee activities including the steering committee strategic retreat in The Hague where LITE-Africa participated in a panel discussion on extractive resources for prosperity and responsible sourcing from fragile areas. LITE Africa also participated in a number of NGO pillar calls, as well as the in-country working group efforts. Since the listing of VPs priority countries in 2016; LITE-Africa has jointly co-chaired the in-country implementation working group efforts and meetings at different levels in Nigeria. Importantly, we have been able to work collaboratively with other members of the working group to develop a concept note and a two-year action plan. LITE-Africa also participated in the annual plenary meeting and contributed to strengthening the VPs implementation through presentations on the verification framework.

CNL training programme on the VP on security, human rights

 The Voluntary Principles Initiative became necessary because of widespread international concern over the way security forces operate while protecting oil and mining installations in many parts of the world.

To promote responsible business practice and greater respect for human rights through the implementation of the Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights in Nigeria, LITE-Africa in collaboration with Chevron Nigeria Limited (CNL) – a member of the corporate pillar, facilitated trainings to ensure greater respect and protection of human rights and fundamental freedom in the extractive industry by security operatives.

The training programme also aimed at enhancing participants’ understanding of human rights due diligence, torture and the use of force and firearms as it relates to the United Nations convention against torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment and punishment and the UN code of conduct for law enforcement officials, especially for the government security forces,

The training took place in four locations, including offshore facilities namely Warri, Escravos, Abiteye and Lagos. The participants numbering 412 were drawn from Government Security Forces (GSF), private security personnel and CNL security staff.

The Voluntary Principles Initiative became necessary because of widespread international concern over the way security forces operate while protecting oil and mining installations in many parts of the world.  Using the instrument of the Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights, LITE-Africa has continued to provide capacity building and guided policy reforms towards integrating human rights into companies’ operations in Nigeria.

Till date, LITE-Africa has trained over 2500 Security personnel on the VPSHR.

D-HEAT

3-day Dynamic Hostile Environment Awareness Training (D-HEAT) for ZOA workforce in Maiduguri

 The Leadership Initiative for Transformation and Empowerment (LITE-Africa) carried out a 3-day Dynamic Hostile Environment Awareness Training (D-HEAT) for ZOA workforce in Maiduguri, Borno state Nigeria.

The training which was conducted between, 17-19th October, 2017 provided participants with an opportunity to reflect on the context (security and cultural context) of their intervention and survival in difficult, high-risk and volatile environments.

The training which built the capacity of 11 participants (3 females and 8 male) was carried out with the aim of improving their knowledge of multiple threats (present in Borno State and by extension North East) and means of dealing with them in an effective manner; promoting cultural understanding using effective communication, build and sustain relationships. Additionally, the training equipped participants with practical knowledge of safety and security procedures according to specific threats.

Using ZOA security management system as one of the training resources, participants were able to analyse and conduct an in-depth security risk assessment of their immediate work environment with examples from participant’s every day on-the-job experiences. Role plays were also used to drive home important points. At the end of the training, participants demonstrated a new understanding and commitment to individual and institutional safety and security.