The Saving One Million Lives (SOML) programme is a major initiative with potential for making a significant impact on MNCH services in Nigeria which will inevitably have knock on effects on quality, access, governance and overall performance of the PHC system for improved health outcomes.
As the Independent Verification Agent (IVA), we are to provide an independent, credible and coherent analysis of State and Federal Government performance and earnings under the SOML Performance for Result (PforR) using agreed upon data sources and earning calculations in line with specifications spelt out in the Program appraisal document (PAD).
NPHD Ltd signed a partnership agreement with HAN Ltd, the lead Organisation contracted through the Federal Ministry of Finance, to carry out the IVA role process. HAN, has its head office in Lagos and is responsible for verification of all the Southern States plus Kaduna, Plateau and Kwara States. NPHD Ltd is responsible for the verification of 16 States (Sixteen), namely; Kano, Katsina, Jigawa, Benue, Taraba, Borno, Gombe, Bauchi, Yobe, Niger, Nassarawa, Kogi, Kebbi, Adamawa, Sokoto and Zamfara States plus FCT.
At the Abuja Regional Office, the team is led by Dr. Ben Anyene who serves as the deputy director, Dr. Emmanuel Sokpo as the head of strategic coordination & planning, Dr. Grace Onotu as the project Manager, North and Dr. Ahmad Abdulwahab as a consultant giving technical assistance on a need basis.
Partners Meeting and Northern States Orientation Workshop
We had a one-day management meeting at Tahir hotel where NPHD and HAN concluded on the modalities of partnership before the commencement of the IVA implementation. This was followed by a one-day workshop for the IVA state representatives in North Tahir Hotel, Kano.
An introductory visit was made to the 16 NPHD assigned States plus the Federal Capital Territory. This was to establish a good working relationship with the states and to inform them on the role of IVA and criteria for verification of all the DLIs. The states expressed satisfaction and understanding of the criteria and promised to comply as spelt out in the PAD.
Verification and Computation of Payments
The IVA team worked closely with the FMOH Program Management Unit to obtain reports on the NICS/SMART 2015/2016 survey reports to compute State earnings based on program criteria. This provided an opportunity for NPHD to establish relationship with the National Bureau of Statistics, the Federal Government accredited survey institution for conducting national surveys. This will pave way for the 2018 SMART survey where NPHD would be playing a more significant role especially in the northern States.