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5th December, 2015

Improving public participation in the budget process


Topic
Health Budget Advocacy


Community Health and Research Initiative (CHR), one of the NGOs in the PACFaH partnership, is conducting advocacy to increase levels of public funding and strengthen accountability for routine immunisation at federal level and in four states in Northern Nigeria (Kano, Kaduna, Bauchi and Niger). Read more about their experiences here.
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Background

The Partnership on Advocacy for Family and Child Health project in Nigeria (PACFaH) is a social accountability project funded by the Gates Foundation. It builds partnerships between indigenous NGOs, champions and activists to encourage national and state governments in Nigeria to fulfil their commitments on child and family health. Community Health and Research Initiative (CHR), one of the NGOs in the PACFaH partnership, is conducting advocacy to increase levels of public funding and strengthen accountability for routine immunisation at federal level and in four states in Northern Nigeria (Kano, Kaduna, Bauchi and Niger).

Advocacy approaches

In Niger State, CHR has been engaged in of the following strategic advocacy activities:

  • Initial round table sensitisation meetings with State Primary Health Care Development Agency, State Ministry of Health, State Planning Commission and civil society organisations. This helped to identify issues and inform advocacy at different levels of government. Training of CSOs and the media to improve participation in the budget process.
  • Supporting the 2016 pre-budget policy dialogue, as well as advocacy meetings to ensure sufficient and transparent allocation to routine immunisation in the budget.
  • Participating in the Routine Immunization Working Group (RITWG) meetings at state level Development of budget scorecards with 8 core indicators that track financial commitment, transparency and accountability on routine immunisation.
  • Supporting CSOs and the media to use the scorecard for advocacy Participated in an advocacy visit to the Niger State Executive Governor. 

What was the result?

The CSOs led by CHR participated in the 2016 budget process and facilitated a pre-budget meeting between the state planning commission and the state primary health care development agency, which built consensus on the 2016 budget allocation to routine immunization and improved openness. Also The media, CSOs, and the public will also participate in the upcoming 2016 budget hearing.

Key achievements

  • Capacity building and mentorship of CSOs and the media, as well as sensitisation of key government stakeholders, led to improved public participation in the 2016 budget process compared to previous years. 
  • The emergence of the Niger State Coalition of CSOs and Media on Immunisation. 
  • The proposed budget for routine immunisation in 2016 is about 25% higher than in 2015. 
  • Routine immunisation has its own dedicated budget code in the 2016 budget proposal for the first time. This will make it easier to track releases against allocation.

"CSOs led by CHR participated in the 2016 budget process and facilitated a pre-budget meeting"