As more Nigerians download and engage with the ConsTrack mobile app for tracking of constituency projects, Civil Society leaders across the country have lauded the initiative and recommended the app as a veritable tool for constructive and productive citizen engagement.
The user friendly mobile application was recently launched by OrderPaper Nigeria to empower citizens to engage their elected representatives on constituency projects.
The app is available for download on both Google Play Store and IOS Store, respectively.
Among the civil society leaders that recommended the ConsTrack app are the Executive Director, Media Rights Agency (MRA), Edetaen Ojo; Director, International Press Centre (IPC), Lanre Arogundade; Convener, Corruption Anonymous and Coordinator of African Centre for Media and Information Literacy (AFRICMIL), Chido Onumah, and Convener of Take Back Nigeria, Jaye Gaskia.
According to Arogundade: "The quest for a robust democratic culture, where media freedom is respected begins with the right to know and hold opinions. Our right to know and interrogate what our legislators do with constituency projects funds is not negotiable. That is why I ask you to engage the ConsTrack App now."
On his part, Ojo said: "I stand for development-oriented constituency representation, which prioritises the interest of the people and respects their right to information. I endorse the Cons Track App."
Onumah and Gaskia also endorsed the app.
A defining feature of the app is that it allows citizens to track and directly report their findings on the projects, either by text, audio or videos with their mobile devices in the comfort of their neighbourhoods, communities and constituencies.
These independent citizens’ reports invariably ignite a chain of updates, reactions and counter-reactions from various stakeholders in a continuous stream of engagement. The ConsTrack app is important also, as a veritable platform for legislators to tell their success on constituency projects, in order to provide a balanced narrative and healthy interface between citizens and their elected representatives in parliament.
In summary, the ConsTrack app is a tool that cuts through the controversy on constituency projects by disrupting corruption and opacity associated with the scheme, in a manner that engenders policy reforms along the lines of transparency, accountability and inclusiveness.
The release of the ConsTrack app is a culmination of various levels of multi-stakeholder consultations and validation exercises that have spanned over a year. Actors and stakeholders that have been involved in the consultations include legislators in the National and State Assemblies; Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) of Government; Civil Society Organisations (CSOs); Community Based Organisations (CBOs); the media; software and IT experts; development practitioners, among others.
The ConsTrack project is designed and implemented by OrderPaper Nigeria, the country’s authentic citizens-parliament multi-platform interface, with support from USAID.