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1 Civil society participation in the Ethiopian PRSP process Finnish Aid in a PRS Context Helsinki Workshop 19-22 May 2003.

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Presentation on theme: "1 Civil society participation in the Ethiopian PRSP process Finnish Aid in a PRS Context Helsinki Workshop 19-22 May 2003."— Presentation transcript:

1 1 Civil society participation in the Ethiopian PRSP process Finnish Aid in a PRS Context Helsinki Workshop 19-22 May 2003

2 2 Context Extremely poor country – approx 65% pop living in poverty Food crisis increased time pressure on PRSP Post-conflict – donor-govt relations tense, social divisions and sensitivities Following extensive discussion of devt strategy during 2000 elections Previous consultations eg Symposium on Performance of the Ethiopian Economy 2000 Decentralisation process under-way

3 3 Nature of Ethiopian CS Famines had developed emergency relief approach CS was restricted in 1970s and 80s Rapid growth of NGOs in 1990s CS co-ordination around food emergencies set the tone for collaborative working NGOs and churches play important role in health and education delivery History of advocacy/ engagement with government Independent press growing

4 4 The interim PRSP April 2000 Prepared in under 2 months solely by govt Based on Second Five Year Devt Programme CS critique that it was simply a collection of devt plans rather than being specifically focused on poverty and lacked alternatives Didnt include detailed plan for consultation process CSOs initially viewed participation in the PRSP with suspicion

5 5 Government PRSP consultation process Consultations Aug 2001 – Jan 2002, PRSP submitted to IFIs July 2002 Led by Ministry of Economic – Devt and Cooperation (MEDaC), but inter-govt Steering Group Used existing institutional framework – feasible and sustainable 3 tier - national, regional and district levels Discussions held in 115 out of 532 woredas (districts)

6 6 consultation process contd.. Discussion docs – IPRSP and 2 nd 5 Year Development Programme Stakeholders should have been involved in all levels of the analytical process Participants – political parties, knowledgeable individuals, CSOs, specifically to include most vulnerable groups Independent observers – confirmed free from govt intervention

7 7 Civil societys engagement with the PRSP Reactive and proactive Official spaces and claimed spaces Started in response to the IPRSP Worked mainly through CRDA Undertook detailed sectoral analysis of IPRSP Thematic working groups – developed sectoral policies Private sector engagement eg sectoral working groups of Chamber of Commerce In-depth analysis of poverty

8 8 The role of CRDA CRDA network since 1973 famine 200 members – very broad, INGOs and local CSOs listening to the grassroots? Proactive in engaging with govt. Awareness-raising workshops – invited govt reps (but they didnt always attend!) Circulated information on PRSP Analysis and policy formulation workshops > submissions to PRSP Thematic working groups

9 9 NGO Taskforce Formed June 2001 20 members, chaired by CRDA network monitored consultative process First point of contact with PRSP Steering Committee and negotiated for NGO involvement Co-ordinated CSO views In-depth studies on contributions of NGOs to poverty reduction Encouraged CSOs to participate in consultations developed position papers - NGO position paper on the PRSP - March 2002 workshop 150 people (UN, NGOs, churches etc)

10 10 Role of INGOs and donors Very high presence of INGOs in Ethiopia INGOs members of CRDA, so activiely involved DFID funded person to work on PRSP in CDRA, participation by pastoralists, NGO Working Group and training of journalists IFIs didnt fulfil their rhetoric of participation

11 11 Civil society involvement in monitoring Govt stated intention to deepen participation through monitoring Some CS experience of budget monitoring, tracking poverty indicators and monitoring quality of services Challenge of the PRSP – its a vision paper rather than detailed devt plan Service delivery improvements and their impact on poverty to be tracked by CS CS seeking to work in collaboration with govt monitoring plans

12 12 Conclusions Broad satisfaction of CS with consultation process Unprecedented consultation process – first time without govt moderators, public consultation very new for this government Mainly reactive to govt proposals rather than forging new ones Expectations raised – can they be fulfilled?

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