Malawi Progress Report 2016-2018
The commitments in Malawi’s first action plan mostly included vaguely worded indicators rather than measurable activities, making implementation difficult to determine and limiting potential impact. While a National Steering Committee existed during action plan development, it did not meet during implementation.
|Freedom of Information||This commitment aims to pass the Access to Information (ATI) Bill in Parliament. Passage of the ATI Bill is a major achievement for civil society, and it will improve transparency and accountability in Malawi.|
|Extractives Industries Transparency Initiative||This commitment aims for Malawi to join EITI as a candidate country. The extractives sector is expected to grow significantly in Malawi, thus incentivizing transparency and accountability in this area.|
Development of Malawi’s first action plan occurred primarily during an October 2014 meeting that involved a limited number of government and civil society stakeholders. A National Steering Committee, consisting of government and civil society representatives, submitted the final action plan for approval, but has not met during implementation.
|Beyond “governance” civil society|
|Mostly “governance” civil society||X|
|No/little civil society|
|Narrow / little government consultation||Primarily agencies that serve other agencies||Significant involvement of line ministries and agencies|
Most commitments in Malawi’s first action plan contained vague implementation activities, which lowered their potential impact and made their implementation levels difficult to assess. Future action plans could build on priority areas from the first plan, like access to information and extractives sector transparency, by including measurable and verifiable implementation activities.
|COMMITMENT TITLE||WELL-DESIGNED (YEAR 1)*||STARRED (YEAR 1)**||OVERVIEW|
|1. Freedom of Information||No||No||While the President signed the Access to Information (ATI) Bill into law in February 2017, various obstacles remain to ensuring that citizens can easily exercise their rights.|
|2. Citizen Participation||No||No||This commitment seeks to improve citizen awareness of consultation opportunities in the decision-making processes. The lack of measurable and verifiable activities makes implementation difficult to assess.|
|3. National Integrity System and Fight Against Corruption||No||No||Corruption remains widespread in Malawi. While the Anti-Corruption Bureau is expected to receive increased funding in the 2017-2018 budget, reducing corruption will require a more holistic approach beyond this commitment’s activities.|
|4. Public Sector Reforms and Public Service Delivery||No||No||Public sector reform is important in Malawi. The Public Service Sector Reform Commission’s mandate expired in January 2017, and it is unclear if the Commission’s recommended reforms are being carried out.|
|5. Extractives Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI)||No||No||Malawi plans to improve transparency in the extractive sector by joining EITI. Malawi submitted its EITI candidacy application and established an EITI multi-stakeholder group and secretariat.|
*Commitment is evaluated by the IRM as specific, relevant, and has a transformative potential impact.
** Commitment meets the criteria (above) for well-designed commitment and is substantially or fully complete.