Promote Participatory Budget in 05 Communes (CI0014)
Action Plan: Côte d’Ivoire Action Plan 2016-2018
Action Plan Cycle: 2016
Lead Institution: Office of Senior Ministry, Ministry of Interior and Security
Support Institution(s): Decentralized authorities; Civil Society Organizations; Local economic operators;
Policy AreasCapacity Building, Fiscal Transparency, Gender, Marginalized Communities, Participation in Budget Processes, Public Participation, Subnational
Current Situation or problem/question to be addressed/having to be resolved: Lack of transparency in budget development and implementation; Main purpose: Encourage local authorities to practice participatory budget; Brief description of Commitment: Create conditions to ensure the participation of all local players in decentralized authorities budget development and implementation. OGP addressed challenges by the commitment: More efficient public resources management. Relevance: -Budget transparency -Participation of populations in public affairs management, in their collectivity's budget development and management -Populations take ownership of the management of projects in their collectivities; -Local elected representatives' duty of accountability; Ambition: -Train Five (05) pilot communes on participatory budget practice -Promote an active and participative citizenship -Build the operational capacities of civil society organizations in the area of participatory and commitment approach in public interest actions -Initiate and propose exchange and consultation mechanisms about gender planning and budgeting performance -Strengthen the capacities of women's groups in the target collectivities in planning and budgeting processes at local level; -Build the capacities of local authorities in gender planning and budgeting performance.
IRM Midterm Status Summary
14. Promote participatory budgeting
Brief description of the commitment:
Create conditions to ensure the participation of all local players in decentralized authorities budget development and implementation.
Verifiable and measurable steps to implement the commitment:
14.1. Promote an active and participative citizenship
14.2. Strengthen the operational capacities of civil society organizations in terms of participative approach and commitment in public interest actions
14.3. Strengthen the capacities of women’s groups in the target collectivities in planning and budgeting processes at local level.
14.4. Initiate and propose exchange and consultation mechanisms about gender planning and budgeting performance
14.5. FIVE Communes are experimenting with the participative budgeting.
Responsible institution: Ministry of State, Ministry of the Interior and Security
Supporting institutions: Cabinet to the Ministry of State for the Interior and Security,General Directorate for Decentralization and Local Development.
Start date: May 2016
End date: June 2018
Context and Objectives
This commitment aims to encourage local authorities to engage in participatory budgeting. According to the representative from the Ministry of the Interior and Security, the promotion of participatory budgeting among elected representatives can improve governance at the local level and drive the population to participate in decision making.1 The process allows the government to authorize the population’s appropriation of their own development, so they are involved and benefit from it.
Participatory budgeting also promotes transparency in local budgets and expands local resources.2 The representative also declared that the process could provide an improved contribution to the community budget. This last point relates to the government’s obligation to be transparent and acceptable in its management of public affairs and to encourage citizen participation and control over public action.
According to the representative from the Ministry of the Interior and Security, civil society is an essential actor in this activity. The ministry incites the localities to adopt participatory budgeting, but civil society takes on the work of training populations to use a participatory budget. He added that civil society has the support of the European Union in this activity.
If implemented as is, the commitment has a moderate potential impact. The commitment can contribute (according to the government) to more efficient management of public resources by the setting up organisms and putting them into operation.3 Thus, the operationalization should allow better population participation in the management of public affairs and more awareness of their concerns. According to a civil society representative who is a specialist in corruption and participatory budgeting,4 a participatory budget allows the true needs of the population to be identified and then included in the management of projects. However, he says that the process is complex because it is not compulsory. Only town halls that volunteer to establish a participatory budget do so. This commitment is relevant to the OGP value of civic participation. The commitment is verifiable but contains milestones that are not quantifiable (e.g., the promotion of an active and participatory citizenship).
14.1. To promote an active and participatory citizenship: This milestone was substantially completed, although it is difficult to measure its effectiveness. According to the representative from the Ministry of the Interior and Security, the government carried out the commitment by involving civil society in the choice and execution of development projects. The government provided the IRM researcher with a report regarding participatory budgeting in Yamoussoukro from January to December 2017. According to this report, the project is relevant to 'access to information, reinforcement of capacity of thought leaders and running community forums for the promotion of participatory budgeting in the towns of Abengourou, Bondoukou, Daloa, Divo, Duekoué, Ferkessédougou, Gagnoa, Korhogo, Man, and Yamoussoukro.'5
14.2 and 14.3. To strengthen the operational capabilities of civil society organizations in their participatory approach and commitment in actions of public interest
To strengthen the capabilities of women’s groups within the targeted localities concerning local planning and budgeting: These milestones have been completed. According to the first intermediary narrative report on the participatory budget, between January and December 2017, the capability of 300 opinion leaders and 50 facilitators were strengthened in social accountability methods and in techniques for the facilitation and prioritizing of community projects. The report also noted that several forums for promoting the participatory budget were held in Abengourou, Bondoukou, Daloa, Divo, Duekoué, Ferkessédougou, Gagnoa, Korhogo, Man, and Yamoussoukro. The ministry representative showed this report to the IRM researcher.
14.4. To initiate and propose exchange and consultation mechanisms concerning gender planning and budgeting performance: This milestone is considered incomplete due to lack of proof. According to the representative from the Ministry of the Interior and Security, several exchange and consultation mechanisms for gender planning and budget performance were initiated and proposed. The first intermediary narrative report on the participatory budget indicated that a module on budgeting for gender planning had been included in a workshop, but the contents of the module are not noted. The ministry made the report available to the researcher.
14.5. Five communes experiment with participatory budgeting: This milestone has been completed. The representative of the civil society platform said that some communes of Abidjan are
currently experimenting with participatory budgeting with the support of the United Nations Development Program.6 He added that many civil society representatives had been involved with making local authorities and populations aware of participatory budgeting. They traveled to many areas to explain how participatory budgeting works and the role of each party. They also helped to establish local committees to monitor projects and budgets at the community level. Evidence of these workshops being held or reports from the nongovernmental organization Social Justice were not given to the IRM researcher.
The IRM researcher recommends that these activities be continued in the next national action plan. An important process, participatory budgeting is pertinent to budget transparency and the involvement of populations in the management of public affairs. The civil society platform feels that the milestones should be more specific. They could include, for example, indicators on the number of organizations targeted in populations that have been trained. The IRM researcher recommends that the government reformulate the milestones and ensure an implementation that is complete, quantifiable, verifiable, effective, and efficient. According to a civil society representative who is a specialist in corruption and participatory budgeting,7 the town halls should be made more aware of the process, so they can accept the mechanism. They should be shown its advantages. Civil society representatives felt the government could go as far as putting pressure on citizens financially so that they implement this mechanism to create an incentive at commune level.
1 Jean Jacques Yapo, Deputy Director of the Partnership for Decentralization and Assistant to the Director General at the Partnership for Decentralization and Local Development, Ministry of the Interior and Security, interview by the IRM researcher, 16 February 2018.
4 Civil society representative specializing in corruption and participatory budgeting, phone interview with IRM researcher, 23 April 2018.
5 Please see https://bit.ly/2HmhXGG for a copy of these documents.
6 Civil society platform representative, interview by IRM researcher, 2018, followed by phone and email exchanges.
7 Civil society representative specializing in corruption and participatory budgeting, phone interview with IRM researcher, 23 April 2018.
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