Sekondi-Takoradi Design Report 2018-2020
- Action Plan: Sekondi-Takoradi Action Plan 2018-2020
- Dates Under Review: 2018-2020
- Report Publication Year: 2021
Sekondi-Takoradi’s highly collaborative co-creation process resulted in an action plan reflective of citizen priorities. This plan continues previous OGP commitments in fiscal transparency and civic participation in the areas of development planning and sanitation. Civic participation in public procurement monitoring represents a new area for reform with a transformative potential impact. Looking ahead, Sekondi-Takoradi should design commitments to ensure government responsiveness to citizen input to increase reforms’ potential open government impact.
|Table 1. At a glance
Participating since: 2016
Action plan development
Is there a Multi-stakeholder forum: Yes
Action plan design
Commitments relevant to OGP values: 1
The Open Government Partnership (OGP) is a global partnership that brings together government reformers and civil society leaders to create action plans that make governments more inclusive, responsive, and accountable. The Independent Reporting Mechanism (IRM) monitors all action plans to ensure governments follow through on commitments. Sekondi-Takoradi joined OGP in 2016. This report evaluates the design of Sekondi-Takoradi’s second action plan.
The Sekondi-Takoradi second local action plan was co-created through an inclusive process in alliance with several civil society organisation (CSOs), such as Friends of the Nation and Berea Social Foundation. Multi-Donor Trust Fund (MDTF) funding supported a highly collaborative co-creation process that included 10 community consultations and two consultations with vulnerable groups. High-level government support, ongoing public communication through radio and television, and an inclusive working group strengthened the process. Efforts resulted in an action plan reflective of citizen priorities.
The action plan continues previous commitments in the sectors of sanitation, fiscal transparency and participation, and public participation in development planning. The plan includes several ambitious reforms, most notably commitment 1 that aims to foster citizen monitoring of public procurement for infrastructure projects, which carries a transformative potential impact. Commitment 4 to reactivate the assembly’s citizen public service complaint channels also represents a new policy area in Sekondi-Takoradi’s OGP action plans.
The design of this action plan has two main areas for improvement. First, most commitments rely on online information disclosure and portals. Only a fraction of Ghana’s population has access to the internet. Therefore, commitments focused on transparency and participation channels online reach a minority of the population. Second, most commitments in this plan include channels to collect citizen feedback but do not explicitly outline how the feedback will inform government practice. Moving forward, Sekondi-Takoradi should design commitments with explicit reference to how the assembly will respond to public input and use input to improve government services.
Table 2. Noteworthy commitments
|Commitment description||Moving forward||Status at the end of implementation cycle.|
|1. Transparency and Accountability in Public Infrastructure
Enhance transparency and accountability in the delivery of public infrastructure by publishing project and contract information; develop mechanisms for citizens to monitor and report on implementation
|For this commitment to meet its transformative potential, implementers must develop a plan to ensure the long-term sustainability of citizen monitoring groups. Additionally, government responsiveness to citizen feedback should be mandatory and public. It will also be crucial that project and contract information is published in a timely manner.||Note: this will be assessed at the end of action plan cycle.|
|2. Civic Participation and Fiscal Transparency
Enhance civic participation by empowering citizens in decisions related to development planning, composite budgeting, and fee fixing; create a localised standard operating procedure for streamlining financial records management and sharing.
|Sekondi-Takoradi Metropolitan Assembly (STMA) fiscal information should be published in both accessible and open data formats. Greater financial transparency could provide a foundation for participatory budgeting and civic monitoring in future action plans.||Note: this will be assessed at the end of action plan cycle.|
|3. Public Service Delivery Communication and Citizen Feedback
Improve transparency and reduce bureaucracy in the acquisition development permits through a smart governance system.
|For ambitious implementation, the online platform could include a portal for the public to submit concerns or observations regarding development projects and the permitting process. Increased project transparency could offer the groundwork for future civic monitoring of development projects.||Note: this will be assessed at the end of action plan cycle.|
The IRM recommendations aim to inform the development of the next action plan and guide implementation of the current action plan.
Table 3. Five KEY IRM Recommendations
|1. Develop a plan to ensure that broad and inclusive co-creation consultations are repeated in future cycles with available resources|
|2. Strengthen communication between working group members and the community on co-creation and implementation progress|
|3. Ensure online portals are sustainable and complemented with offline activities for open government results|
|4. Raise commitments’ potential for results by focusing commitment design on government responsiveness to citizen input|
|5. Collaborate with civil society to explore opportunities for participatory budgeting in future action plans|