NaCSA Assesses ‘gee trenk’ projects

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The National Commission for Social Action (NaCSA), is working in recent times to become a viable and exemplary institution for efficient and effective pro-poor service delivery. The team focuses on good project governance which ensures meaningful engagement and rationalization of benefits of developments by citizens, especially vulnerable groups. They also work hard to inspire the trust and confidence of other stakeholders in the country’s development endeavours.

A monitoring team headed by the National Commission for Social Action’s Programme Manager, Sheku T. Kamara, has completed the monitoring of twenty-one projects under the Sierra Leone Community Driven Development (SLCDD) Programme Phase 2, locally called ‘Gee Trenk’.

The programme supports communities to empower locals with community-driven projects. For example, a colossal sum amounting $52 million by the Islamic Development Bank and Government of Sierra Leone five years ago, under the SLCDD Programme is currently been implemented in seven Chiefdoms in three districts (Tonkolili in the north, Moyamba in the South and Kenema in the east).

This is happening under the dynamic leadership of Commissioner Ali Badara Mansaray, whose leadership has transformed the institution since he took up office a couple of years ago.

The ‘Gee Trenk’ programme entails construction of schools, health centres, sanitary facilities, rural water supply facilities, boreholes, irrigation systems, solar energy, grid system, town planning and development, livelihood support to agricultural processing and transportation etc.

The Monitoring Team was joined by NaCSA’s District Commissioners to assess the work done so far in a total of twenty-one project sites in their respective districts (Tonkolili, Moyamba, and Kenema).

Construction projects assessed in Moyamba and Kenema Districts, which include the Motoni Community Health Post in Ribbi Chiefdom, Moyamba District; construction of ten VIP toilets in Bradford Town; Mafungbay Community Primary School formerly known as the Evangelical Model Primary School; Gbangbatoke Junction Community Primary School; Ngeibu Community Health Post; Kamboma Old Town, Kpendebu and Kojo Community Health Posts in Kenema District.

These exclude one Mrs. Yabom Kamara of Aliday Enterprise, who has pre-financed the construction of a Community Health Post at Ngeibu Village in the Moyamba District.

Other contractors have so far received 20% of their project cost and should have done their building foundation and lay solid bricks to reach window height on the main structures and other facilities like staff quarters, dug water wells, toilet facilities etc.

The Assessment team did its measurement to see that at least 40% of site work is done so as to make the second tranche of another 20% payment. “We are doing measurement and will pay for the work done so far,” says Sheku T. Kamara, NaCSA’s Programme Manager and head of the Assessment Team.

The Team interviewed contractors, community management team and other key stakeholders on successes and challenges, and discussed the way forward for a successful implementation of the construction phase of the various projects.

The Assessment Team commended work done so far in the three Community Health Posts in Kenema District and called on contractors to measure up to the task for the successful completion of their projects as against June 30, 2018.

Construction of the Ngeibu Community Health Post by Aliday Enterprise in Moyamba District was highly commended. Some of the challenges highlighted by contractors include: poor road network, delay in supply of building materials due to long distance from project sites etc.

The worse project so far according to the assessment team is the Gbangbatoke Junction Community Primary School construction, which is not only abandoned by the Contractor, Abdul Bah of Balal Construction Company, but also done a sub-standard work on site which has been condemned.

Mr. Sheku T. Kamara admonished contractors and CMC to work together for the benefit of their communities. They, in turn, assured the Assessment Team of their firm commitment and in working together to have a smooth completion of all projects in their respective locations.

NaCSA is a semi-autonomous government agency which augments the work of social sector Ministries and Agencies and local authorities in delivering social services to deprived and remote communities across the country.

Its mission is to promote community-based, demand-driven and sustainable social and economic activities leading to the alleviation of poverty, reduction in the threat of renewed conflict and improvement in the speed, quality and impact of development initiatives, while also providing social protection to vulnerable groups, in collaboration with other stakeholders in the country’s development endeavours.

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Abu Bakarr Tarawally is a Journalist based in Freetown. He works for the Sierra Leone Broadcasting Corporation as a radio producer. He has once served as Editor for a few newspapers in Freetown, including Sierra Express Media, The Exclusive Newspaper and his own newspaper, the Daily Express Publications. He is a teacher trainer, and loves writing and reading a lot. Email: abstarawally@gmail.com. Call +232 88601277 or +2327661303.

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