Friday, June 10, 2016

Friends from Germany, visit ANEEJ

Rev Klein, Mathias, Bob, Jan and Atakpu

Bread for the World BftW, a German-based non-Government Organization paid a two-day working visit to The Africa Network for Environment and Economic Justice ANEEJ, from the 8th – 9th June, 2016. The BftW team comprising Rev. Jurgen Klein Consultant Religion and Churches in Africa and Herr Mathias was led by Jan Papiendick programme officer for BftW. ANEEJ executive director the Rev. David Ugolor welcomed the visitors to ANEEJ Secretariat.  Speaking on behalf of the ANEEJ team which consisted of Mr Leo Atakpu (deputy executive director), Bob MajiriOghene Etemiku (Manager Communications), Innocent Edemhanria (Project Officer), Ramat Idiake (Head Finance & Admin), Mary Igharo (Admin), Charles Iyare (Monitoring & Evaluation head), Sandra Eguagie (Projects Officer) and Kelly Umukoro (Communications Officer), the Rev. Ugolor briefed the visitors on some of the Projects which ANEEJ is currently implementing in the Niger-Delta Region. He said that ANEEJ seeks to use innovative methods to gather data because the Corruption Perception Index CPI often used to evaluate corruption was defective. While Mr. Atakpu spoke extensively on the Resource Governance in the Niger Delta Project (REGOND), Mr. Etemiku highlighted the prospects and challenges of using the media to drive the process of development at a time when oil prices have affected everyone in Nigeria.
Mr Jan Papiendick speaking on behalf of the bread for the world team thanked ANEEJ for the warm welcome from ANEEJ, and highlighted that in the coming year 2017 Bread for the World would be focusing on 6-thematic topics to include: food security, rural development, environmental protection and preservation, strengthening CSOs to promote human rights and peace and conflict resolution. The Bread for the World Team also took time to visit some of ANEEJ project Partners St Patrick Catholic Youth in Benin City. 

Jan of Bread for the World making a speech, with Madam Speaker and Rev Ugolor listening with rapt attention

 Highlight of the Bread for the World visit was the courtesy call by both ANEEJ and Bread for the World team to the first Female speaker of the Edo State House of Assembly, Honourable Elizabeth Ativie. ANEEJ team led by the Rev David Ugolor, had Mr Leo Atakpu and Mr Etemiku in tow. The Rev David Ugolor thanked the Honourable Madam Speaker and said that the visit was a follow-up of an earlier visit by ANEEJ to the Speaker. According to Rev Ugolor, the visit demonstrates how governance works. He asked the Speaker to help manage the finances of the state. ‘You will be remembered for the people-oriented programmes you initiate instead of the number of largesse doled out to political friends and cronies’, Rev Ugolor said to Madam Speaker. On a question from Mr Jan Papiendik if the state government would be willing to support NGOs like ANEEJ financially, the Honourable speaker said that she would look into it and see how she could help. She therefore invited ANEEJ to partner with the State House of Assembly on capacity building, an invitation ANEEJ is prepared to accept.
Bread for the World and ANEEJ on a visit to First Female speaker of the Edo State House of Assembly, Benin City, Edo state,  10th June 2016
Before leaving, the Bread for the World team were treated to Nigerian food – rice, beans, fried plantain, tomato sauce and turkey.