Is there a reason that citizens should engage their government? Of what use is talking to a government that citizens perceive continues to fail without their problems being solved?
Citizenship engagement is very challenging, especially in many African countries where the leaders have repeatedly failed the people and there is widespread corruption. Citizens in these countries, including Nigeria, have lost faith in the ability of the elected officials to deliver the holy grail of quality leadership they so much seek from their leaders.
Despite this concern, citizens’ engagement is very essential to holding public officials accountable and enriching the democratic process. Through citizens’ engagement, the government is able to understand the genuine concerns of the people and their needs. It is also an opportunity for the government to carry citizens along within its programs and policies. Once the people are involved and feel involved, they take on their citizenship status, which in turn translates to a better community. The citizens are eager to get the word out
about government policies and programs and follow through.
At @PolitiKIT_NG, we give opportunities to young people to be trained in the areas of community mobilization, advocacy and political leadership. This fellowship program equips the fellows with the necessary skills for community and national engagement.
Here are 7 Reasons why you should be involved in community engagement
- Engaging with the government will enhance community building and reduce anti-government sentiments.
- Getting involved will inspire other people to join you and may lead to more extensive types of government participation.
- Government policies and programs will be improved in terms of administrative feasibility and acceptance. These policies will mostly be tailored according to the needs of the people – thanks to your engagement.
- You will help the government have a better understanding of the problems, needs, and priorities of the people.
- You will force the government to be more open and transparent which will help build citizens’ trust in government.
- You will not be one of the people who sit down and lament the deplorable state of things in your community.
- That is how you become a leader because leadership is about solving problems and not lamenting about problems.