4. Transparency and Accountability

3 Jun - 24 Jul 2019
Go back to Online Dialogue on the Transitional Stabilisation Programme

To ensure effective implementation of the TSP, a commitment is made to strengthen and capacitate key institutions and public service systems. The goal is to improve accountability and transparency as critical values for positioning the country towards a pathway of inclusive and sustained economic growth.

With the above background in mind:

  1. What opportunities are presented by the TSP to ensure transparent and accountable implementation?
  2. What mechanisms should be further strengthened, enhanced or established to ensure a transparent and accountable process of the TSP implementation?
  3. What needs to be done by the business sector, private sector, Government and ordinary citizens to ensure implementation of the TSP in a transparent and accountable manner?

 

    Comments (47)

    Milton Nyamadzawo • Research and Documentation Officer (Zimbabwe Youth Council) at Zimbabwe Youth Council from Zimbabwe Moderator

    Welcome to this online dialogue on the Transitional Stabilisation Programme (TSP). This consultation is open from 3 June to 3 July 2019 and is publicly available for Zimbabweans to participate in the discussions.

    Introduced by the Government of Zimbabwe  in October 2018, the TSP, seeks to stimulate economic growth and stabilise the macroeconomic situation in the country. The Programme outlines policies and projects that will guide Zimbabwe’s socio-economic interventions and initiate policy reforms to position the country toward a middle-income economy by 2030.  Collaboration between government, citizens, the private sector, civic organisations and all Zimbabweans on the TSP is important. 

    This online dialogue is an opportunity to nurture a shared understanding among citizens and stakeholders on the policy reforms and project responses in the TSP. Your insights will help to ensure an enhanced understanding of the TSP among fellow citizens; contribute input into future development plans and expand scope for engagement and accountability among stakeholders on the planning, monitoring and implementation of the TSP. 
    The consultation will be segmented into four discussion threads:

    You may wish to read through the abridged version of the TSP and respective background papers in each of the respective discussion threads. 
    Please feel free to comment in as many threads, and respond to as many questions, as you like. Though the consultation will largely be hosted in English, comments in some of the local languages are also welcomed. If you have any difficulty accessing or contributing to this consultation, or any other issues with the website, please contact us by sending an email to info@globaldevhub.org.
    This consultation will culminate in a synthesis document to be presented to a policy dialogue at a date to be advised. 

    Questions on the process of consultation can be addressed to william.tsuma@undp.org [UNDP] info.nangozim@gmail.com [NANGO] and nyamadzawo@gmail.com [ZYC]

    We look forward to your contributions to this important discussion!
    Please note that though all contributions will be made publicly available. We shall request you to register an account to post or respond to another comment. This short process ensures the integrity of the discussion and helps us conduct a more transparent and inclusive dialogue. Questions on registration can be directed to info@globaldevhub.org.

    Simon Munyaradzi Garikayi • student at Midlands State University from Zimbabwe
    • There is need of the business sector to be transparency and accountable in their day to day business to achieve the TSP,
    • IT IS WITH HARD CONCERN THAT THEY SHOULD ALSO BE THE ASPECT OF INCLUSIVENESS OF THE CITIZENS IN EVERY DECISION MAKING AND PARTICIPATORY SO AS TO HAVE A BROADER THINKING OF WHAT THE CITIZENS WANT AND TO AVOID VIOLENT CONFLICTS AND PROTEST
    • there is need to consider people in the rural ares also to partake in such programes,their voices should be heard thus the issue of inclusiveness
    • there is need to strenghten the health sector aswell as the education sector thus improved standard of living to the teachers so as to make the TSP to be implemented
    Milton Nyamadzawo • Research and Documentation Officer (Zimbabwe Youth Council) at Zimbabwe Youth Council from Zimbabwe Moderator

    Thank you, Simon, for your comment and welcome to the conversation.
    As far as transparency and accountability are concerned can I ask a few follow up questions?

    1. You mention business and the private sector. HOW should they be more transparent? are there any steps or measures you would like to recommend?

    2. Do you see any opportunities at all for citizen participation in ensuring transparency and accountability in implementing the TSP?

    @Blessing Muyambo, some great points on strengthening the health sector and ensuring rural participation in the implementation of TSP programmes.

    Tatenda Zhakata • Student at Midlands State University from Zimbabwe

    Thank you Simon for raising the issue of the business sector, and i would love to add a few ideas to yours. Also, thank you Milton for the question on transparency.

    On the issue of business, the public business to be precise, our government runs a number of enterprises and parastatals.

    More than often we have seen headlines stating that parastatals are underperforming due to corruption and mismanagement of resources by corrupt officials.

    Therefore, I suggest that there is a need for commercialisation and privatisation of majority of the parastatals in Zimbabwe because they are currently in a sorry state.

    Lessons can be drawn from the privatization of the Dairy Marketing Board back in 1997.

    More so, on the issue of transparency-in the public business sector, the government can continue running a number of parastatals but there is a need for the inclusion of citizens in the bodies that keep checks and balances on parastatals, because the public needs to know what is happening in the public sector: they also need to know the decisions made, why they are made and whether they are feasible or not.

     

    Milton Nyamadzawo • Research and Documentation Officer (Zimbabwe Youth Council) at Zimbabwe Youth Council from Zimbabwe Moderator

    Many thanks to you for your comments, Tatenda. 

    You have underlined the importance of citizen involvement and engagement to ensure transparency and implementation (that interventions are feasible).

     

    You have also singled out the businesses owned and run by the government; highlighting the need for privatisation, governance reforms, and citizen involvement. Do you think that the TSP adequately addresses your concerns in the segment on 'PUBLIC ENTERPRISES & LOCAL AUTHORITIES’ SERVICE DELIVERY' or should more be done? (See attached document with a selection of screenshots)

    Tatenda Zhakata • Student at Midlands State University from Zimbabwe

    382. In sectors where there are demonstrative competency and efficiency gains, it will be desirable for Government entities and local authorities to move out in favour of private sector service provision. The objectives on 385. full privatisation on 386

    Tatenda Zhakata • Student at Midlands State University from Zimbabwe

    Apologies Milton for the above unfinished comment which i will finish on this comment. 

     

    Looking at 382, 385, 386 and 387 on the document you attached, the reforms seem to be very sound. And the role of the government on 383 (of focusing on institutional efficiency and regulation) will also mean that the privatized entities are run in accordance with the laws that will be agreed upon to ensure effectiveness and efficiency of the entities.

    So my answer is YES. The TSP adequately addresses my concerns on Public Enterprises and Local Authorities service delivery

    Onias Munamati • Senior Policy, Monitoring and Evaluation Officer (NANGO) at NANGO from Zimbabwe Moderator

    @tatenda zhakata, looking now at transparency and accountability, do you think the proposed reforms are being implemented in a way that you can follow, is there enough feedback on were we are now, can we ask questions to the government

    Milton Nyamadzawo • Research and Documentation Officer (Zimbabwe Youth Council) at Zimbabwe Youth Council from Zimbabwe Moderator

    Thank you, Tatenda, for this input.

    If you'll permit me, can I ask if you see a clear role for yourself other citizens in ensuring the implementation of the TSP in a transparent and accountable manner?

    Please also feel free to comment on any other aspects relating to Transparency and Accountability, or to join any of the other discussion rooms.

    Milton Nyamadzawo • Research and Documentation Officer (Zimbabwe Youth Council) at Zimbabwe Youth Council from Zimbabwe Moderator
    1. Good day! As we continue discussing the Transitional Stabilisation Program here are some definitions from Oxford Dictionaries. 

     

    noun: transparency; plural noun: transparencies

    1. The condition of being transparent.

      clarity, clearness, lucidity, straightforwardness, plainness, obviousness, explicitness, unambiguity, unambiguousness;

      blatantness, flagrancy, obviousness, patentness, manifestness, barefacedness, shamelessness, brazenness, boldness, unmistakableness, clearness, clarity, plainness, visibility, distinctness, apparentness, perceptibility, discernibility, palpability

      frankness, openness, candidness, honesty, directness, forthrightness, unreservedness, plain-spokenness, straightness, straightforwardness, ingenuousness, innocence, guilelessness, simplicity

      antonyms:opacity, cloudiness, obscurity, ambiguity, cunning, secrecy     

    noun: accountability

    1. the fact or condition of being accountable; responsibility.

      answerability, responsibility, reporting, obedience

      antonyms:unaccountability

     

     

    Onias Munamati • Senior Policy, Monitoring and Evaluation Officer (NANGO) at NANGO from Zimbabwe Moderator

    I like your definitions Milton Nyamadzawo, so to be more precise the question we could be asking is whether the government is being clear or  explicit in the way the TSP is  being implemented, also are they answerable, and as citizens are we able to ask questions, do we have an opportunity to ask questions. 

    Nancy Kachingwe • from Zimbabwe

    Here are my contributions... 

    1. Opportunities: the TSP does not itself provide any institutional framework for transparency/accountability. By and large it constitutes a top down approach to policy making. There's no real guarantee that institutional and legislative measures outlined will actually make our policy and decision making more transparent and accountable--if the emphasis is on privatisation of state owned enterprises is intended to increase accountability, then my view is that this logic doesn't hold, since the private sector has much less accountability than the state by definition. There's mention of devolution (I haven't followed the discussions on this), and more recently the government has put in place the TNF and a few other spaces for dialogue. So perhaps we can hope that these might create spaces for consultation, negotiation and accountability. Otherwise we are left with our legislative / statutory bodies  (commissions etc) that have a constitutional mandate to ensure the system / executive are playing by our collectively agreed rules of the game. Some parts of the system work, others don't, but the objective should be to make sure that the machinery does actually work. Where it doesn't then we have to understand why (there are many reasons!) and propose reforms. 

    2. Mechanisms: the mechanisms are there ... we have a long list of bodies with a mandate to ensure transparency and accountability. Parastatals have boards. We have a Parliament and a judiciary. We have media whose role it is to inform. The problem is whether they work, and if not, why not? Resources? Capacity? Corruption/rent-seeking? Political obstacles? Politicisation. Lack of external pressure/public understanding? Lack of seriousness? Where the TSP itself is concerned however, there's generally a problem of the ivory tower nature of the macro-economic policy which is not exceptional to Zimbabwe and the entire discipline of economics itself has come under fire. I do appreciate that some of the officials in key economic departments make themselves available to speak with stakeholders--I'm not sure how effective this has been, but one has to be concerned that quite often executive decisions are passed without any regard to the legislation in place. There are case studies of legislation such as Freedom of Information acts that have been used to get more information, but enforcement is always an uphill struggle. 

    3. The roles of different actors: The State is a space of competing interest groups, power imbalances and often very strongly welded social/political/economic relationships... both within the state, between state and society and equally importantly between the nation and external actors. Speaking from a feminist perspective, women's rights organisations have consistently had to negotiate around these power dynamics using contestation/confrontation, collaboration, persuasion/logic, exposure and so forth. But for us, accountability is not only something we have had to demand from the state, but from other stakeholders such as the media, corporations, faith based institutions, fellow activists who we expect to do their part. 

    4. TSP and public sector reforms: privatisation is just not the answer. It will lead to even more corruption and the impoverishment of the state by selling off public assets, while also making public goods and services even more expensive for citizens. Privatisation and outsourcing require a state that is able to exercise oversight and regulation over corporates--if state institutions are riddled with corruption and mismanagement, then privatisation won't solve the problem because the state will still have the same corruption and mismanagement problems. Unfortunately, under neoliberalism, the ideology has been that all things publicly managed are mismanaged, and all things privately run are efficient. But the lesson has been learned that the more the state disinvests from its public functions... the worse the problems become. In fact privatisation has simply meant that the elites sell the better functioning public assets to themselves at bargain basement prices to create a whole new oligarchic class. The answer to fixing the public service is not to bypass it, but to fix it... and if we can't be guaranteed that public assets will be sold off in a manner that creates long term benefits, then maybe we should hold on to them until we've fixed the institutional problems that have made them dysfunctional... 

    Milton Nyamadzawo • Research and Documentation Officer (Zimbabwe Youth Council) at Zimbabwe Youth Council from Zimbabwe Moderator

    Hello Nancy. Thank you for your very rich contribution. You touch on so many important elements. 

    -  You speak about the paradox of trying to create more accountability through privatization. This seems to lend support to Simon and Tatends's point that the need for transparency also extends to the private sector since appears it is less transparent than government.

     There seems to be a point of departure though; whereas Tatenda suggests privatization will bring efficiency, you feel that privatisation is a sign that government is abdicating its responsibilities. This seems to be "damned if you do, and damned if you don't" situation.  Is there an exit or entry point where the problems can be fixed without putting a heavy cost on the country?

    - You also point out that some parts of the system work while others do not. In your opinion How might we strengthen the operational parts, and  bring functionality to the parts which aren't working. 

    - In relation to the mechanisms for accountability, some of the factors you mention e.g. Corruption and rent seeking behaviour are explicitly mentioned as priorities in the TSP. Does that make you optimistic? Could you look at it as a reason to get more involved in demanding, seeking, or  contributing to more accountability?

     

    - The "ivory tower" comparison you make echoes earlier comments calling for more spaces and opportunities for citizen participation (including rural citizens). Everyone has a key role to play regardless of their sector.

    - Gender is an important and relevent factor which needs closer attention.

     

    Onias Munamati • Senior Policy, Monitoring and Evaluation Officer (NANGO) at NANGO from Zimbabwe Moderator

    Welcome to week 2 of online dialogue on the TSP. We continue to nurture a shared understanding among citizens and stakeholders on the reforms and policy responses in the TSP. Your insights are important in enhancing the understanding of the TSP among fellow citizens; contribute input into future development plans and expand scope for engagement and accountability among stakeholders on the planning, monitoring and implementation of the TSP. 

    Please feel free to comment in as many threads, and respond to as many questions, as you like. Though the consultation will largely be hosted in English, comments in some of the local languages are also welcomed. We are planning a multi-stakeholder platform at the end of July where participants from the online dialogue will be invited to participate.

    Links to abridged version of the TSP and other related documents will be provided. We also encourage you to share the link to your colleagues, friends and family members so that they can also participate.

    Milton Nyamadzawo • Research and Documentation Officer (Zimbabwe Youth Council) at Zimbabwe Youth Council from Zimbabwe Moderator

    Thank you to all the participants who lent their views and voices to our discussion on transparency and accountability for the implementation of the TSP during the past 7 days. And thank you to everyone who followed the discussion.

    The most salient points to emerge from the coverstation are as follows: Privatisation

    The privatisation of state owned companies was discussed with two seperate ideas emerging. The first idea proposed that privatisation will improve efficiency and profitability, while another suggested that privatisation  would result in the state losing valuable assets and bring less accountability. It was mentioned that there have been previous attempts to privatise local entities. These attempt can be used to draw useful lessons.

    The role of the private sector and other stakeholders

    Another perspective which emerged was that the private sector and business community have a role to play in improving accountability and transparency. Other stakeholders such as those in the health, media, religious, and education sectors should be more transparent themselves and be more proactive in improving mechanisms for ensuring accountability.

    Citizen participation

    The importance of citizen involvement and participation in planning and implementation was underscored by several participants with particular mention being made to gender and rural inclusivity.

    "there is a need for the inclusion of citizens in the bodies that keep checks and balances on parastatals, because the public needs to know what is happening in the public sector" Tatenda Zhakata

    "Where the TSP itself is concerned however, there's generally a problem of the ivory tower nature of the macro-economic policy..." Nancy Kachingwe

    Corruption and Mismanagement

    Corruption, mismanagement and other malpractice were identified as major barriers to transparency and accountability. If unaddressed, any mechanisms or measures to create accountability and improve implementation will be curtailed.

    We look forward to more fruitful engagement on the TSP in the coming weeks.

    Jussy • Programs Officer at National Association of Non-Governmental Organizations - NANGO from Zimbabwe

    Qsn 2. First and foremost TSP document is a pretty strategic document with the potential to transform Zimbabwean economy from the vicious cycle of poverty. Nevertheless policy makers should improve in terms of information dissemination when they implement new developmental policies so that they can get more views from people who are in trouble rather than doing desk research.

    To ensure transparency of the TSP policy makers should give updates and feed back to general populace. (through publishing information in different media platforms also in different languages be it in Radio, TV, and Newspapers.)

    More so, to strengthen the TSP policy makers should do away with haphazard way of information dissemination. They should find  a specific time to disseminate information for instance every month-end.

    Onias Munamati • Senior Policy, Monitoring and Evaluation Officer (NANGO) at NANGO from Zimbabwe Moderator

    thanks Jussy for the comment, i like your suggestion for timed feedback, the point is well noted. citizen participation is also very crucial, how do you think participation of more people like you can be enhanced in the national policy development and implementation.

    Rudo Grace Gwata-Charamba • Results Based Management Consultant/ Author / Researcher at free lance consultant from Zimbabwe

    The choice of the Results Based Management (RBM) approach for implementing the TSP was in itself the first step towards instituting a sound mechanism for enhancing transparency and accountability. However, the implementation processes  are somewhat different. Maximum stakeholder participation, with end-user or beneficiary centrality,  and accountability for results ( changes in people’s lives caused by the related projects); some of the very basics of RBM are not evident. Although there was some participation in the planning  as well as in the ongoing monitoring,  there is significant room for improvement where more stakeholder groups, particularly the end-users of project deliverables, can be involved in identifying the most pressing needs that the related projects would seek to meet as well as the necessary changes towards improvement. In addition, this group of stakeholders is best placed  for providing credible  data on the performance of the associated projects, since the target changes are to be effected in their lives. For the same reason, the group thus needs to be more meaningfully involved in the project monitoring and reporting processes. That is, stakeholder identification and provision of opportunities for meaningful participation needs improvement. Such  participatory processes, including the derivation of credible information on performance,  would significantly improve the notion of transparency in the implementation of the TSP.  

    Also in the context of RBM, there is mutual and enhanced  accountability for results among stakeholders. Policy  makers  are accountable for ensuring that policies are formulated with a focus on  results (improving people’s lives, founders are accountable providing resources, and timely too, while  project implementers are accountable for causing or contributing to changes in people’s lives (the achievement target results), rather than just producing deliverables or following rules and regulations. End users are accountable  for accessing and using project deliverables towards improvement. Such accountability,  among the stakeholder groups,  is not clearly apparent in the implementation of the TSP. Furthermore,  the assignment of such accountability is not clearly evident. Stakeholders also do not ordinarily demand and use information on performance, another basic element of RBM, for the purposes of both accountability and transparency as well as learning and improvement. 

     

    Onias Munamati • Senior Policy, Monitoring and Evaluation Officer (NANGO) at NANGO from Zimbabwe Moderator

    You brought about a very crucial issue of RBM, how do you think its application can be strengthened to improve transparency and accountability.  how do you also think that citizen participation can also be strengthened especially looking at your constituency.

    Thanks Rudo for your input

     

    Rudo Grace Gwata-Charamba • Results Based Management Consultant/ Author / Researcher at free lance consultant from Zimbabwe

    Thank you very much Onias. If meaningful participation can be more inclusive, with the end-users of project and programme deliverables regarded as central, then that is likely to improvethe implementation of the Programme. Also when target changes relating to the Programme are identified, through consensus, with as many stakeholder groups as possible represented, then there is likelihood of buy-in and ownership of the associated initiatives.  Consequently, it becomes easier to assign the related levels of responsibility and mutual accountability among the stakeholders. Resources are allocated closely in line with expected changes & that ensures efficiency as well as transparency in reporting because as the execution progresses, whatever level of change should correspond to the resources expended. Stakeholders also need to be sensitized to demand and use  information on performance, which relates to progress towards achievement of the desired change. Such information then guides decisions towards continuous improvement. That way implementers are held accountable as they commit to causing or contributing towards improvement and for using information, obtained from end users of project deliverables. The end users are also accountable for accessing and using deliverables as well as be ready to articulate the changes,  in their lives, caused by such access and use. There is thus need for increased interaction with more representatives of groups of citizens to obtain information which should  be used meaningfully to guide decisions towards continuous improvement of processes as well as ads people’s lives. These actions  can significantly help to  enhance both accountability and transparency. As indicated in an earlier comment, the identification and analysis of stakeholders need to be revised from time to time to ensure that all groups are fully represented.

    You are welcome and I hope the question has been somewhat addressed. 

     

    Onias Munamati • Senior Policy, Monitoring and Evaluation Officer (NANGO) at NANGO from Zimbabwe Moderator

    Rudo thanks  so much for the insight, we are putting together these suggestions. I the idea of continuous stakeholder analysis and hw the end user shld be an active participant nt a passive user

    Rudo Grace Gwata-Charamba • Results Based Management Consultant/ Author / Researcher at free lance consultant from Zimbabwe

    Onias Munamati 

    You are welcome Onias and hank you too. I hope the all the discussions will make a difference and contribute towards improving people’s lives, the basic tenet of RBM and development. 

    Rachel Chitsungo • from Zimbabwe

    The challenges we face are systematic. The general culture and way we operate either create opportunity or problems when we then begin to demand for things like transparency. There are deeper problems we need to unpack in order for there to be genuine transparency and this begins with the culture with which we do things. 

    Onias Munamati • Senior Policy, Monitoring and Evaluation Officer (NANGO) at NANGO from Zimbabwe Moderator

    Racheal wld you mind sharing these deeper systemic problems with us here and if possible suggest solutions 

    Kudzai Chidzikwe • from Zimbabwe

    In order to enhance transparency on the Presidential Vulnerable Household Input in TSP document (pg126), the government has to set an independent body responsible for the distribution of resources. In the past individuals have raised concerns over partisanship during distribution. Proper records have to be kept and a follow up on a small sample size has to be done to check whether the intended beneficiaries have received the inputs.

    Onias Munamati • Senior Policy, Monitoring and Evaluation Officer (NANGO) at NANGO from Zimbabwe Moderator

    Indeed it is important that grass root programs are well monitored. social accountability monitoring should start at local and community level. thanks Kudzai Chidzikwe for the valuable comment.

    Maxtee Makuwerere • from Zimbabwe

    Thank you for such a wonderful program.

    Just to take it up from what has been suggested already, I would like to suggest that high importance should be given to communication and visibility during the implementation of the action.

    Possibly if we could have communication and visibility activities being implemented in accordance with rules of the TSP programme in line with the rules of other international and established organizations’ rules and requirements of visibility and communication, however, with the relevant body of TSP managing the programme and monitoring the visibility activities. It is a strong weapon to transparency, thus, trust within the community at large.

    Visibility and communication actions shall demonstrate how the intervention contributes to the agreed TSP programme objectives and accession process. This would likely lead to strengthened general public awareness (which is very critical) and even support of interventions financed and the objectives pursued.

    Another important thing would be to have National contact points within the country to ensure the visibility of such a programme as the TSP. These will circulate general and specific information, including information on conditions for participation and information on submission of proposals, as well as to organise information and promotional activities.

    Franklin T. Mukwaira • Project Officer (NANGO) at National Association of Non-Governmental Organizations - NANGO from Zimbabwe Moderator

    Thank you very much Maxtee Makuwerere for the valuable suggestion on the importance of communication and visibility. It is well noted. I like the idea of National contact points as you mentioned.Can you please explain more on your idea.

    Maxtee Makuwerere • from Zimbabwe

    Franklin T. Mukwaira

    Okay

    On the issue of national contact points, i thought it would be a great weapon/resource if we want more transparency and accountability.

    A problem i have been noticing in any portfolio/program/project done by our government is that interested parties are left with many questions with noone to answer and nowhere to go to with those questions.

    So if we could try to bring the TSP programme with a bit of more engagement with the actual citizens of Zimbabwe ( the main stakeholders) by having National contact points that brings in convenience to those with valid points but less access.

    I noticed from the implementation and monitoring progress discussion that one of the goals of TSP is to share project results to the maximum extent practicable to the interested parties. However, due to certain restrictions, final project results may not be publicly available thus the need for National contact points for those who would be really interested.

    I’m not sure if i have articulated well but i think if we are looking for some real transparency and accountability, these NCPs would be really necessary @Franklin 

    Franklin T. Mukwaira • Project Officer (NANGO) at National Association of Non-Governmental Organizations - NANGO from Zimbabwe Moderator

    Maxtee Makuwerere thank you very much for your valuable comments. The point on National Contact Points (NCPs)is well noted. This goes hand in hand with information dissemination to promote citizen participation.

    Thank you Maxtee Makuwerere 

    Tafadzwa • Capacity Building Specialist at ZiCHIRe from Zimbabwe

    The new Finance Minister assumed office with a lot of optimism from the citizens premised on the dawn of the Second Republic and the Zimbabwe is Open for Business Mantra. However that soon evaporated and quickly mutated to hot air due to many economic fundamentals going south characterized by poor social services, high inflation, massive price hikes on basic commodities e.g. fuel and food, a volatile exchange rates  market fueled by the black market leaving the country on the edge. Implementing the TSP as a panacea for these challenges at a time public confidence with the government is at its lowest is thus naturally going to be problematic. This then immediately presents the finance chief with a new set of challenges given that it’s highly unlikely that this situation will improve any time soon. However the TSP itself is without doubt a good policy blue print pregnant with opportunities within the program that can be leveraged on to ensure successful implementation. Accountability and transparency reforms can help address the principal challenge of lack of public confidence and trust with gvt programs in general. One of such would be the introduction of either an independent body or internal structure within the ministry that focuses exclusively on transparency and accountability and look at what is working and not working in the implementation of the TSP. Such a mechanism was absent during the ZimAsset era which explains why much of the targets contained in ZimAsset were not achieved despite it being a sound policy program. Civil society has often played this watchdog role very efficiently. The ministry is urged to be more proactive in disclosure in terms of what is happening in the implementation of the TSP. The trend in prior years has been a tendency by Government to publicize these policy documents before and at launch followed by little disclosure to citizens during implementation thereby missing the opportunity to interact with citizens and get feedback on the implementation of its programs. The finance ministry needs to get the information on the TSP out to everyone, solicit public participation in thoroughly evaluating and monitoring the implementation process, obtain fresh ideas and demonstrate that government welcomes oversight.

    Parliament and civil society’s oversight role needs to be strengthened to monitor implementation. CSOs need to go beyond just being traditional critics of government policies but promote citizen participation and closely engage and monitor implementation and create reporting mechanisms or dashboards on the results of the program that are shared with key stakeholders including government itself. That way, the country may experience a more robust, transparent and accountable process of the TSP implementation.

    Franklin T. Mukwaira • Project Officer (NANGO) at National Association of Non-Governmental Organizations - NANGO from Zimbabwe Moderator

    Thank you very much @Tafadzwa for your valuable comments. I like your idea of introducing an independent body within the Ministry, that focuses exclusively on transparency and accountability.

    You mentioned that the Ministry needs to disseminate more  information on the TSP. How best do you think the Ministry can disseminate information to your community? 

    Franklin T. Mukwaira • Project Officer (NANGO) at National Association of Non-Governmental Organizations - NANGO from Zimbabwe Moderator

    Welcome to week 3 of online dialogue on the TSP. Thank you for the insights so far and we urge you  continue contributing your thoughts to expand the dialogue as far as we can within the given time of the dialogue.  Enhancing the understanding of the TSP among fellow citizens; remains key to this dialogue and beyond.  

    Please feel free to comment in as many threads, and respond to as many questions, as you like. Though the consultation will largely be hosted in English, comments in some of the local languages are also welcomed. We are planning a multi-stakeholder platform at the end of July where participants from the online dialogue will be invited to participate.

    Links to abridged version of the TSP and other related documents will be shared. We also encourage you to share the link to your colleagues, friends and family members so that they can also participate.

    Onias Munamati • Senior Policy, Monitoring and Evaluation Officer (NANGO) at NANGO from Zimbabwe Moderator

    Thank you everyone for participating in the transparency and accountability discussion room week 2. We look forward to hearing your views and comments on transparency and accountability in the remaining weeks. In summary, here are some of the key responses raised in week 2

    Information dissemination through publishing information in different media platforms in different languages. One of the participants noted, “Nevertheless policy makers should improve in terms of information dissemination when they implement new developmental policies so that they can get more views from people who are in trouble rather than doing desk research.” Jussy.

    The importance of updates and timed feed back to the general populace to ensure accountability

    RBM

    Strengthened Results Based Management (RBM) was mentioned as the first step towards instituting a sound mechanism for enhancing transparency and accountability. In the context of RBM, there is mutual and enhanced accountability for results among stakeholders. Policy  makers  will be accountable for ensuring that policies are formulated with a focus on  results.

    Citizen participation

    There is thus need for increased interaction with more representatives of groups of citizens to obtain information which should be used meaningfully to guide decisions towards continuous improvement of processes as well as people’s lives.

    Independent bodies

    Another perspective that immerged was the issue on Independent bodies.

    “In order to enhance transparency on the Presidential Vulnerable Household Input in TSP document (pg126), the government has to set an independent body responsible for the distribution of resources.” .

    We look forward to more fruitful engagement on the TSP in the coming weeks.

     

    Tinotenda Mudarikwa • Founder (Rare Diseases & Disabilities Africa Foundation) at RaDDA Foundation from Zimbabwe Moderator

    Welcome to week 4 of our online dialogue. We continue with the conversations to engage Zimbabweans on the TSP and gather insights on better citizen understanding of the Programme. Your responses will help ensure and enhanced understanding of the TSP among citizens, civil society, the private sector and other non-state actors; contribute input into the future development plans and expand scope for engagement and accountability between stakeholders on the planning, monitoring and implementation of the TSP. 

    Please feel free to comment in as many threads and respond to as many or as few questions as you like, Though the consultation will largely be hosted in English, comments in other local languages are also welcomed. 

    Kudzai Chidzikwe • from Zimbabwe

    Since the TSP consist of various projects, it is valuable to incorporate people trusted by the citizens in running the projects in order to enhance transparency. Considering that much of the population in Zimbabwe are Christians, I guess it will be more valuable to include some religious leaders in national projects as the population has gained trust in them. This will increase transparency and allow citizen participation because they will be having trust in people running the projects. Also to allow citizen participation in rural areas, chiefs and headsmen of the community have to be involved in projects that are to be run in the area. Citizen participation is important as it brings new ideas and adoption of new policies is easy when citizens are well aware of what's transpiring.

     

     

    Milton Nyamadzawo • Research and Documentation Officer (Zimbabwe Youth Council) at Zimbabwe Youth Council from Zimbabwe Moderator

    Thank you, Kudzai, for joining us and adding your voice. 

    You reiterate an important point and strengthen the case for inclusive citizen participation which involves rural and urban people alike and avoids top-down approaches in order to reap the benefits from the good ideas which different community members may have.

    You also raise the issue of including religious leaders due to the trust already vested in them. Do you feel that the role of these religious leaders should be more concentrated on ensuring transparency? Mobilising support from their followers?  Implementing TSP projects?  Other roles? Or a combination of the above? 

    Kudzai Chidzikwe • from Zimbabwe

    Faith based organisations have gained trust among citizens as they have done successful projects and programs (build schools, provide food aid, construct boreholes etc.), Incorporation of religious leaders (both Christians and ATR) in national projects can reap huge benefits. Religious leaders can help by restoring morals and values in societies, restoring values in our societies can help to reduce the levels corruption and injustice.

    Also the levels of divisions among different ethnic groups in the country is high, religious leaders can help in ensuring these divisions can be settled or minimised. Once divisions are settled it will be easy to mobilize citizens to participate in national projects. For example if the government is to source funds to do a project in Matabeleland, some people in other regions may not donate because of divisions that were created in the past but if religious leaders settle these disputes it can promote better participation in national projects among different ethnic groups.

    In terms of policy adoption citizens are more likely to adopt policies in which they would have been included during the policy making process (bottom up) rather than top down approach which the government uses in most instances. So involving religious leaders represent the views of their congregants during policy making can help in making the policy more adoptable as individuals feel their voice was represented.

     

    Maxtee Makuwerere • from Zimbabwe

    Kudzai Chidzikwe This is quite an interesting suggestion @Kudzai, I believe it’s a strong way to easily get the society’s trust whenever you are undertaking an authentic project 

    Milton Nyamadzawo • Research and Documentation Officer (Zimbabwe Youth Council) at Zimbabwe Youth Council from Zimbabwe Moderator

    Thank you, Kudzai and Maxtee. The issue of trust which you have reiterated is a key ingredient when it comes to ensuring accountability. Your suggestion to give religious leaders from all religions (especially in the context of pre-existing tensions) has been well noted.

    In and earlier post, Simon Munyaradzi Garikayi suggested that the private sector also needs a more prominent role in bringing about accountability. Do you think stakeholders from these very different sectors could collaborate well on this issue?

     

     

    Gift Ntuli • Analyst at UN-CTBTO from Austria

    Milton Nyamadzawo Thanks for moderating this dialogue. I just joined and I am pleased with the level of engagement among the members. Kudzai and Maxtee's exchange on leveraging the nation's trust in religious leaders got me thinking. What's in there for the religious leaders? After all truth being said, churches function like businesses therefore what would motivate the religious institutions to invest their time resources in the TSP? The same question applies to private sector where profit is king. Why should business X be transparent and uphold the TSP when their competitor Y isn't and making more money? I am not sure if this has already been raised, but TSP could benefit from an incentive based transparency system. For example the gvt could create an a point based transparency/corruption tracking system that is based on customer input. Then a company's score would have a direct impact on the borrowing limits for example. Such use of collective intelligence to create an incentive driven system would encourage the private sector to implement the TSP. Additionally, it will also address the issue of doubt and mistrust among companies because transparency/social metrics will be public. This is one example, but i am sure there are many ways the gvt could make use of incentive-cause bias in fostering transparency and accountability within the TSP framework. 

    Milton Nyamadzawo • Research and Documentation Officer (Zimbabwe Youth Council) at Zimbabwe Youth Council from Zimbabwe Moderator

    Thank you, Gift for Joining the conversation. Your views are both valuable and timely. We have noted your suggestion to create an incentive-based system for encouraging transparency. could you share more detail or examples?

    Gift Ntuli • Analyst at UN-CTBTO from Austria

    Good day Milton. I think the GoZ needs to engage the private sector and understand what type of incentives drive them the most. My guess is it would be linked to import tax rebates and access to forex. Then they can design a system that rewards those being transparent. 

    You know something similar was done with pollution when they introduced emission auctions. Allocate points that allow a corporation to release GHGs then have companies auction and trade these points. In the end each company had a direct way of tying climate change to profit and thus they became more careful. Check out this wiki entry on the topic: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Emissions_trading

    Short story is companies love making money and will in most cases do anything ( including the good) to make more money. Lets take advantage of that bias. 

    Milton Nyamadzawo • Research and Documentation Officer (Zimbabwe Youth Council) at Zimbabwe Youth Council from Zimbabwe Moderator

    Gift Ntuli thank you for your clarification on this. The approach you are promoting can boost profitability as well as transparency if applied in good faith with the full participation of all stakeholders. 

     

    We look forward to further engagement from you. 

    Deserve Nyasha Makoni • Peace, security and development practitioner at M.S.U peace studies student from Zimbabwe

    It is sad to note that when we reflect back to the history of the country we were once a giant in Africa as well as rubbed shoulders with other nations beyond the boarders of Africa and it is my enerst anticipation that, the former glory must be retained....To ebsure that there is transparency and accountability there is great need of our leaders to understand that they are occupying positions of leadership to save the people not themselves.In this regard servanthood leadership must be ensured..Moreover the helm at the top myst lead by example it is do heart breaking that the law enforcers and those that are supposed to be educating citizens about the law they are the ones in the fore front of breaking and as soon as they break the law they abuse power and cover their tracks which is not right for development thus the helm at the top must be crusaders advocating for zero toleration to corruption tendencies so that the citizens may take the cue....inclusivity is very important for the attainment of the TSP because all sectors must be involved thus there is need for the engagement of the youths, women in issues affecting the economy as well as those in the informal sectors so as to hear their views toward achieving middle income....lastly let justice take its cause in issues to do with transparency, leaders who are corrupt must not stay in public offices for they are a cancer to the public. It does not matter who has done it let justice be taken when issues of corruption take center stage 

    Rutendo Kambarami • Communications Specialist (Consultant) at Consultant from Zimbabwe

    Dear Deserve, 

    Thank you for your contribution which points to key points of inclusivity of women and youth and the informal sector as key players that will lead towards the middle income status.  Your points of principles that should underpin the aspect of transparency are well noted and in this regard would you be able to share with us some key recommendations of (i) deepening inclusivity and (ii) advocating for the principles of transparency.  Look forward to further engaging.