HESPI signed a Grant to support the strengthening of the role of Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) in Public Finance Management (PFM) and Financial Transparency and Accountability (FTA) in Selected IGAD Member Countries

Sound PFM is a central element of an effective administration, underlying all government activities as it encompasses the mechanisms through which public resources are collected, allocated, spent and accounted for. As such, PFM processes comprise the entire budget cycle, public procurement, audit practices and revenue collection. HESPI strongly believes that sound, transparent and accountable PFM is a key pillar of governance reforms and is vital to provide public services of good quality to citizens, as well as to create sustainable economic and social conditions in the fragile states of the IGAD.

Public Financial Management processes entail budget formulation and execution, accounting and reporting, and external scrutiny. It aims at ensuring aggregate financial discipline, including allocation and operational efficiency, while dealing with the important prioritization of scarce resources for strategic purposes. Effective PFM also aims to ensure operational efficiency by achieving maximum value for money in the delivery of public services.

Notwithstanding the considerable benefits of sound economic and financial governance, the target countries of this project lack good financial governance and fiscal transparency; and rank very low in the relevant international indices. According to the findings of the 2021 Open Budget Survey (OBS) of the International Budget Partnership, these countries have some of the lowest ratings in important PFM categories including: public participation in the budget process, transparency and public access to information on government, as well as budget scrutiny and oversight

The efforts of designing effective policy interventions to improve and reform the PFM and FTA of the targeted fragile countries, will focus on building the capacities and skill levels of CSOs to advocate, monitor and evaluate national financial performance. Accordingly, the first phase of the project will entail building the knowledge base and internal capacities of the CSOs and their ability to have effective impact on the public sector delivery of social services.

The Horn Economic and Social Policy Institute considers ensuring effective PFM and FTA as essential to contributing to economic stability and promoting inclusive growth and poverty reduction, through avoiding misuse and leakage of scarce financial resources. At this time of prevalent conflicts and insecurity, and adverse climate change threating the livelihoods of large segments of the population in these countries, managing scares financial resources well is imperative in the sub region.

In that regard, this SIDA Grant targets the capacity building support to be extended to select Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) of the IGAD members in the areas of enhancing the effective participation and advocacy for good governance, and sound PFM and FTA in these countries.