PTF Accountability Project to Move Ahead with ADB Support in the Philippines

May 10, 2013 — The Partnership for Transparency Fund is being supported by the  Asian Development Bank (ADB) in a one-year project in the Philippines to improve the capacities of stakeholders – local governments  and civil society organizations (CSOs) in particular – for effective and constructive engagement with particular focus on budget formulation, execution and procurement monitoring and evaluation. The project will provide grants to 5 or 6 CSOs to develop and pilot models of effective citizen engagement processes with local governments in the focus areas. Funding support for the project is $170,000.

This technical assistance project will support regional implementation of the Second Governance and Anti-corruption Action Plan of the ADB.  Project mobilization is timed after the elections this month to ensure that the project works with the new set of local executives with fresh mandates from their constituents. PTF will field its Philippine-based Advisers to implement the project pro bono with Gerry Van der Linden serving as Project Director and Dante de los Angeles as Grant Manager.

PTF was engaged directly for this project because of its global grant-making experience with CSOs on anti-corruption programs and the expectation that PTF’s expertise will harness global ‘best practices’. Thus, PTF will seek to match CSOs with PTF’s local and international advisors to help sub-grantees to develop the social accountability tools that they will need.

In addition to the grants provided to CSOs, the project is expected to result in two technical reports: one on the experience with existing policies on citizens engagement in local government; while the other will provide a synthesis of social accountability measures and global best practices in the focus areas. The project will also result in a publication demonstrating how governance risks can be mitigated at the local government level through social accountability measures. Replication will be encouraged of the models developed under the project with assistance from the Budget Department.

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New AusAID Grant to Bolster PTF Anti-Corruption Knowledge Sharing in the Philippines

The Australian Agency for International Development (AusAID) has initiated a grant of $200,000 to PTF to broaden the impact of PTF’s anti-corruption work in the Philippines. Since 2003 PTF has been supporting the anti-corruption work of CSOs in the country. To date, working in close partnership with the Coalition Against Corruption of the Makati Business Club (CAC/MBC) PTF has supported 22 projects with technical assistance and funding of over $600,000.

The Philippines is home to high rates of corruption, ranking 138 out of 178 countries on Transparency International’s Corruption Perceptions Index. Research has shown that as much as 40 percent of public resources are squandered due to corruption.

The AusAID grant will provide funding for 4-6 new small projects managed by PTF in conjunction with local CSO counterparts constructively engaging with government agencies. The program will also bolster knowledge sharing efforts, providing funds to cultivate and disseminate best practices from PTF’s supported projects over nearly a decade and using media and social media to spread the lessons to the wider civil society community, other government agencies, and the business sector.

There is an obvious efficiency argument for knowledge sharing: knowing what works and what does not, sharing monitoring tools and training materials are all beneficial. But the benefits of knowledge sharing go beyond efficiency considerations. For example, when one government department has developed constructive relationships with civil society and the private sector, sharing this experience with other parts of the government would be most useful.

The program was initiated in June and will be implemented over 24 months.

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