Views of a community member on benefits of Participatory Budgeting
By McKenzie Makusha | October 2016
Budget transparency helps us communities to understand how the income generated by the councils is distributed. This eliminates questions amongst the communities for example we might want to ask if the budget was done properly and if the needs of the communities were met. Local Communities would also want to know whether the budget is involving everyone e.g. women, the disabled, children and men.
As the budget will be open for all the communities to participate, needs of the community members from different wards will be assessed and prioritised at the same time giving clarity on why certain projects are done in other wards and not in some wards. For instance, people from ward 10 may need renovations of their clinic and people from ward 19 might need an ambulance because they are located a bit far from the clinic.
Questions like how much money was used, left and evidence of projects carried out will give satisfaction to communities. They will have room to monitor the implementation of projects and tick a scorecard after completion of a project and move to the next one.
Because of equal participation of all the community members there will be room to raise voices if any corruption is suspected. Communities will evaluate whether projects that are being implemented are working for their needs. They will be able to identify arears of corruption and know what action to take. The community will be inquisitive rather than being docile. Communities will be able to know what to demand eg a budget information let us say US$2 million dollars’ total revenue collection per year, communities will have a better understanding of what can be achieved with the resources available