Citizen Report Card from 120 Niger Delta Communities (January 2011)

The European Union awarded NIDPRODEV a 10-month grant in June 2010 to conduct Citizen Report Card surveys in 120 Niger Delta communities in the three southern geopolitical zones. The purpose of a Citizen Report Card is to provide public officials, as well as international donors, with the information they need to address the inadequacies of community life that contribute to sustained poverty.

A Citizen Report Card provides information about communities’ perceptions of government performance in the areas of (1) public services (including health, education, drinking water, sewage, communication, security, and credit), (2) good governance, and (3) infrastructure development, in particular, abandoned or incomplete projects.

By the end of December 2010, NIDPRODEV completed the input of data obtained through a 16-page survey administered through focus group discussions and key informant interviews in the 120 communities. Community demographics included 55 rural communities, 40 riverine/rural communities, and 25 peri-urban or urban communities. Forty-two (42) of the communities are oil-producing. Four hundred seventy-eight (478) focus groups, composed of 9,018 participants and representing 10 different tribal or clan identities, were organized into groups of Older Men, Older Women, Younger Men, and Younger Women. Among the 4,794 men and 4,224 women who participated in the focus group discussions, 58% farm, 36% fish, 54% can read well, 3% use a mosquito net, 80% know the causes of HIV/AIDS, and 90% believe that the relationship between their community and the federal government is poor.

NIDPRODEV programme officers will return to the 120 communities from February through April to deliver the findings to community members, along with information relating to citizen’s rights and responsibilities and the upcoming elections. Journalists to whom NIDPRODEV provided training for writing about the Niger Delta from a human rights perspective also will accompany NIDPRODEV programme officers on a number of community visits. The Citizen Report Card will be here on the NIDPRODEV website, be emailed to diverse stakeholders, and be the subject matter for stakeholder dialogue in a conference to be held in each of the three geopolitical zones in April and May 2011.

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