The United Nations Development Program (UNDP) and the Government of Mozambique, represented by the Ministry of State Administration and Public Service (MASFP) and the Ministry of Economy and Finance (MEF) launched this Monday, May 11, in Maputo, a program to strengthen the decentralized governance underway in the country, valued at US $ 60 million. This is the Decentralized Governance Promotion Program (DGPP) and the Responsive Governance Plan for COVID-19.
The decentralized governance promotion program will be implemented by MEF, decentralized entities and other public institutions, involving civil society organizations, the private sector, and local communities. Of the total amount, US $ 1.35 million will be applied in the implementation of the Strategic Plan for Responsive Governance to COVID-19.
The plan results from the emergence of COVID-19 and the need to mitigate its negative impact in the implementation of actions inherent to decentralization and local development, as well as in the coordination mechanisms between the central body, the decentralized governance bodies, the State representations and local authorities, within its operationalization framework.
The initiatives aim, on one hand, to strengthen the Government and other relevant actors for the full functioning of the provincial decentralized governance entities and to fulfill the objectives of this process, as well as to encourage the creation of a more capable local government system. On the other hand, they aim to support the Government in the Response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Speaking at signing ceremony, UNDP Resident Representative a.i. Francisco Roquette, said that the program to promote decentralized governance is the result of close collaboration between the Government and UNDP.
“The second phase of the decentralization process in the country, marks a new stage in the history of Mozambique, not least because it lays the foundations for a better confidence in the government, improvement in the provision of services and more equitable growth,” said Mr. Roquette.
The UNDP acting Resident Representative added that the pandemic tests international solidarity and the need for more cooperation between the public and private sector, in the present and in the post-Covid-19 period. “These are difficult times for the country, and Covid-19 is a test for the Government, citizens, companies and cooperation partners. UNDP is committed to supporting the Government at this time, providing equipment, Internet access and a virtual platform for meetings, in which hundreds of employees can be present across the country”.
For his part, the Minister of Economy and Finance, Adriano Maleiane, said that the Executive is well aware of the challenges the decentralization programme has faced, but believes that it will boost the acceleration of service provision, transparency and the promotion of good governance, ensuring participation and inclusion of citizens through the planned economic initiatives. “Despite the various limitations, the Government remains committed to improving budgetary governance at all levels, which, in general, is reflected in strengthening of transparency in the management of public finances and, in particular, in the improvement of procedures for carrying out and controlling public expenditure, ”he explained.
The four-year financial cooperation agreements were signed by the Minister of Economy and Finance, Adriano Maleiane, the Minister for State Administration and Civil Service, Ana Comoana and UNDP Resident Representative a.i. Francisco Roquette.