Penplusbytes’ “Hack4Citizens” first day in Cotonou Successful

The first day of “Hack4Citizens” ended with a tremendous experience sharing for the twenty participants of this social and technological event. From 27th to 28th of September 2017, the event brings together developers and representatives of Benin civil society organizations in Cotonou, on the theme “Tech Driven Social Accountability for Results.”

Under the guidance of facilitators, Gérard Guèdègbé and Jerry Sam, participants from Togo and Benin were led through the Kakum platform, an electronic monitoring tool for public action set up by Penplusbytes, based in Ghana.

Presentations were made, notably on the usefulness of Kakum and ICTs in general in terms of monitoring citizen and public action. Civil society organizations present also spoke on their activities and the opportunities available throughout the event.

“Digital is essential”, Léontine Idohou from the Network for the Integration of Women of NGOs and African Associations (Rifonga Benin) said. “We, civil society organizations, need to be trained by such technical experts. This will allow us to better inform our population and have their feedback.”

Joël Atayi-Guèdègbé of Nouvelle Ethique – who fights for good governance – emphasized on politicians’ retaliation: “It takes a lot of courage to do what we are in…Such a tool is indispensable.”

The representatives of WANEP Benin, Social Watch and Alcrer, also asked about the experience of Kakum in Ghana, concerns satisfied by Jerry Sam, through the experience of the Ghana School Feeding program and LEAP.

Group activities formed the first stage of the hackathon for the first day, the design of applications similar to Kakum which can be useful for civil society in Benin were created.

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