Mapping South-South Cooperation Solutions in Africa

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Tuesday, 30 April 2019 10:10


The goal is to increase access to energy in selected remote, rural areas in Malawi by promoting innovative, community based mini-grid applications in cooperation with the private sector and civil society. This initiative aims to scale up and strengthen Malawi’s first mini-grid scheme, as well as to provide micro-capital grants and pilot innovative service arrangements for new clean-energy mini-grids.


Malawi is at the cross-roads of rural electrification. The rate of rural electrification is quite low, about 2% reportedly had access to the national power grid. Malawi is one of the least electrified countries in the world, with an average per capita consumption of 85 kWh per year, significantly below the African average of 579 kWh and the global average of 2,777 kWh. Indeed, although 84% of the Malawians live in rural areas, only 4% of the rural population has access to electricity. The provision of sufficient, reliable and clean energy in Malawi is a critical challenge recognized by the Government, which has put energy as a focus area in both the Malawi Growth and Development Strategy (MGDS) II (2011-2016) and MGDS III (2018-2022) the  and the Economic Recovery Plan (2012). In order to tackle the considerable unsatisfied demand for electricity, new generation capacity is urgently needed to supplement the installed capacity, in line with the national objectives of promoting diversified sources and utilizing the country’s abundant renewable energy resources (particularly micro-hydro and solar). Malawi aims to achieve universal access by tripling the national electrification rate in terms of connections to the grid (to 30% in 2030) and mini-grids and provide at least basic access by means of solar home and pico-solar systems. Until recently, mini-grids have been given less attention as a means for electrification, not only in Malawi but also worldwide, in comparison with on-grid (extension of the main grids) and off-grid stand-alone applications.

There is therefore, need to promote innovative sustainable mini grid deployment models that encourage private sector participation.


The Project aims to increase Access to clean energy through development of power plants and mini-grids close to the end users in the rural areas. This initiative aims at increasing access to energy in selected remote, rural areas in Malawi, by promoting innovative, community-based mini-grid applications close to the end users, in cooperation with the private sector and civil society. Considering that financial resources are scarce, it aims to leverage finances by involving the private sector and social enterprises in investments for new generation of access to energy. Given the more remote locations of many of the communities that need to be served, and the cost reductions in renewable energy technologies, an important vehicle for meeting these targets will be clean energy mini-grids. It is expected that the project will set the stage for mini-grids to play a key role going forward in electrifying rural parts of Malawi, thereby assisting the country in meeting its SE4All targets.

The project encompasses the following three components:

1) The expansion of the existing micro-hydro power plant and mini-grid scheme of the Mulanje Electricity Generation Agency (MEGA), an energy company operated as a social enterprise, through the support to the implementation other similar initiatives, while reinforcing MEGA’s institutional capacity to become a self-sustaining entity.

2) The pilot replication of MEGA’s mini-grid model in other areas of Malawi, through the establishment of Public-Private-Partnership service delivery platforms for clean energy schemes, with an emphasis on business models such as Build-Own-Operate. This component also involves the provision of micro-capital grants and pilot innovative service arrangements for clean-energy mini-grids.Through this program, support has been provided for establishment of an 85kW solar mini-grid power plant.

3) Institutional strengthening and capacity building for the promotion of decentralized clean-energy mini-grid applications across the country, through the establishment of a national information clearing house to facilitate the involvement of project developers in rural electrification. This component also intends to recommend ways to mainstream mini-grids into national rural-electrification financing platforms and energy regulatory frameworks. Furthermore, to promote sustainability of mini grid schemes, private public partnerships will be promoted, and productive use of energy is being coupled with the development of the schemes

At the request of the Government of Malawi, UNDP supported South-South Cooperation among Malawi, Zambia and Tanzania in the area of closing the access gap to clean energy.

Provider country: UNDP Malawi, Tanzania, Zambia

Beneficiary Country: Malawi

Supported by: UNDP, Global Environment Facility,Practical Action, Mulanje Energy Generation Agency, Community Energy Malawi, Scottish Government and Malawian Government

Implementing Agency: UNDP Malawi and the Malawian Ministry of Natural Resources, Energy and Mining

Project Status: On-going

Project Period: 2015-2020

Contact Person: Etta M’mangisa, Program Analyst, UNDP Malawi. E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Thursday, 11 April 2019 12:09


The chief aim of this project is to support building the capacities of the new Sierra Leonean Parliament, elected in 2018.


In 2018, Sierra Leone elected a new Parliament, which is more diverse and representative than previous legislatures. Moreover, 85% of the current Members of Parliament (MPs) are making their first parliamentary inning. A new Parliamentary Service Commission (PSC) consisting of the different political parties represented in the fifth Parliament was formed. The PSC and the new MPs need to be capacitated in different aspects on parliamentary functioning to enable them to perform their mandated roles. Considering the standard requirements in modern parliamentary settings, it was observed that the Parliament of Sierra Leone is in need of reform, in order to be in tune with the transformation process now evident in most parliamentary jurisdictions. At the same time, with only 12.5% of MPs, women’s representation and participation in the Parliament is still well below the 30% quota that women’s pressure groups have been advocating for.


Following a long-term strategic UNDP project to support the Parliament of Sierra Leone (2008–2016), the current project focuses on the newly elected Members of Parliament (MPs) and pushes for a strengthened parliamentary framework to improve law making, representation and oversight, and thereby good governance in the country.

The initial milestones of the project include an induction programme for the new parliamentarians, conducted in May 2018 in partnership with Westminster Foundation (UK), and a peer-learning visit undertaken in November 2018 to the Parliament of Kenya, to benchmark the Parliamentary Service Commission (PSC) and the Parliament Budget Office (PBO). During this five-day study tour to Kenya, the Sierra Leonean parliamentarians visited the Office of the Clerk and held detailed briefings with their counterpart PBO and PSC, as well as the Centre for Parliamentary Studies. The concerned MPs further attended sittings of the Kenyan Parliament and met with the services in charge of research, communications and human resources. As a consequence of these South-South exchanges between Kenya and Sierra Leone, the organogram of the Sierra Leonean Parliament has been restructured, resulting in proper line management of staff and the recruitment of sergeant-at-arms personnel for managing the facilities of the Parliament. Other key achievements of the project so far include the presentation by the PBO of the first-ever budget brief for use of MPs prior to the parliamentary debate on the 2019 national budget, and the elaboration by the PBO of the District Development Profile as its first step towards supporting oversight work.

In 2019 the project is in particular focusing on gender, aiming to support the Parliament to come up with an affirmative-action bill, in line with SDGs 5.5 and 16.7 and in tandem with the parliamentary resolution adopted in February 2019 on the United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325 on women, peace, and security. Also, the project has engaged the Parliament in the process leading up to the preparation of the related Sierra Leone National Action Plan (SiLNAP), with the support of UNDP’s global project on the role of parliaments as partners in the women, peace and security agenda (involving four countries: Jordan, Kyrgyzstan, Sierra Leone and Sri Lanka).

Provider Country: Kenya and UK

Beneficiary Country: Sierra Leone

Supported by: UNDP

Implementing Agency: Parliament of Sierra Leone

Project Status: On-going

Project Period: January 2018 – December 2019

Contact Person: Lakshmi Pillai; Chief Technical Specialist (Parliament); UNDP Sierra Leone; This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Thursday, 11 April 2019 09:28


Concerned with ensuring a peaceful and secure environment during the 2018 electoral process in Sierra Leone, this project has been contributing to the establishment of key mechanisms for the safeguard of democratic governance and to the reinforcement of a culture of tolerance in the country.


Sierra Leone has achieved significant institutional reforms in democratic governance, human rights, transparency and accountability, including the accomplishment of three successive peaceful and credible elections since the end of its civil war in 2002. The withdrawal of the United Nations Integrated Peacebuilding Office in Sierra Leone in 2014 was a strong indication of the international community’s confidence in the gains the country has made towards peace and equitable prosperity. Despite these achievements, Sierra Leone’s peace and sustainable development remain fragile. In this context, the 2018 electoral cycle was to be the first one without a Security Council mandate since 2002 and following the 2014 Ebola outbreak.


The “Conflict prevention and mitigation during the electoral cycle” project supported the Government, the people, electoral-management bodies and other institutions in Sierra Leone to ensure that the 2018 elections could be prepared and conducted peacefully. Given the low level of civic awareness expressed in previous elections, particularly concerning citizens’ rights and responsibilities, and those of the Government and elected politicians, attention has focused on human rights and the representation of women, youth and people with disabilities (who are often excluded from political processes), and their roles in preventing violence. Training and logistics were provided for early-warning and response systems, including the strengthening of a national situation room, along with support to the judiciary to enable the rapid resolution of election-related disputes, and the creation of high-level platforms dedicated to preventing violence.

An independent Political Parties Registration Committee (PPRC) was supported to facilitate the signing of codes of conducts for political parties, women and youths, followed by the establishment of District Code Monitoring Committees (DCMCs) across the country to provide oversight and monitoring of political parties’ compliance with the codes of conduct. The PPRC hosted in February 2018 a high-level dialogue that was led by the former President of Ghana, H.E. John Mahama, with the top leaderships of political parties, which resulted in the signing of a peace pledge by the presidential candidates.

The Eminent Persons Group (EPG), an independent assembly of individuals with no political affiliation, was also established. This structure was instrumental in enhancing dialogue and mediation between political parties and significantly contributing to high-level prevention and mitigation of electoral violence. Given that the EPG was stationed at the national level, it played a significant role in creating a link with the local-level DCMCs to promote effective communication, dialogue and mitigation of electoral violence across the country.

A Women’s Situation Room (WSR) was also established to provide a platform for women’s groups to strategize, lobby, plan and refer potential violence against women rapidly and in a coordinated manner. The WSR established a network of women peace activists (national and international) who were equipped with the required skills and knowledge to prevent and respond to violence during elections. This network played a significant role in constructively launching preventive measures to ensure elections took place in a peaceful and all-inclusive manner.

A study tour involving the Government and implementing partners was conducted to Ghana in September 2017 to better understand election security and preparedness. The Sierra Leonean group met with a wide range of Ghanaian governmental and civil-society actors, having been impressed by their long-term preventive pre-election activities. The group noted, in particular, the full-time continuous work of the Ghanaian National Peace Council and the Inter-Party Advisory Committee, providing a platform for political-party dialogue, conflict resolution and transparency to improve public trust in the electoral system. The group raised its awareness regarding the avoidance of private armed bodyguards during the electoral cycle, engaging instead with political parties on finding alternatives. The discussions also reaffirmed the necessity of key elements already planned in the “Conflict prevention and mitigation” project, for instance an electoral court to administer timely judgments, adequately funded election-management bodies, media monitoring, inclusive early-warning mechanisms, and election and civic education that continues beyond the electoral cycle.

The visit also included fruitful exchanges with:

– five main political parties in Ghana, through UNDP Ghana’s political-party strengthening project;

– the Electoral Commission of Ghana, who shared their experience on managing political competition and engaging with political parties; and

– the Ghana Police, who shared their experience on working with political parties on the security of candidates and the use of non-government security operatives.

Provider Country: Ghana

Beneficiary Country: Sierra Leone

Supported By: United Nations Peacebuilding Fund (PBF), Department for International Development (DfID, Government of the UK), Government of Norway and Government of Canada

Implementing Agency: UNDP, Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) and Ministry of Internal Affairs of Sierra Leone

Project Status: On-going

Project Period: June 2017 – September 2019

Contact Person: Agus Wandi; Chief Technical Specialist; UNDP Sierra Leone; This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Thursday, 11 April 2019 08:37


The ADAPT-PLAN project is concerned with mainstreaming adaptation into development planning at national and local (district) levels in Malawi, aiming at increasing the resilience of communities to climate-change impacts, through the implementation of various community-based interventions.


Even though strong political will and commitment are shown to address climate change in Malawi, notably through various dedicated strategies as well as the Malawi Growth and Development Strategy III (2017–2022), major barriers exist to mainstreaming adaptation into development planning. These barriers include poor policy implementation, technical-capacity challenges and knowledge gaps, which are eventually exacerbated by the cross-sectorial nature of climate-change impacts. Yet, if not tackled through significant adaptation efforts, the risks posed by climate change will likely undermine years of development assistance and asset accumulation in the country.


The project entitled “Implementing urgent adaptation planning through strengthened decentralized and national development plans” (ADAPT-PLAN) aims to establish and demonstrate the institutional framework required to mainstream climate-change adaptation (CCA) into development planning at national and local levels in Malawi. The ministries in charge of agriculture, water and forestry and the districts of Nkhata Bay, Ntcheu and Zomba are presently integrating CCA concerns in their district development interventions. ADAPT-PLAN is also enabling the establishment of adaptation indicators to be used to determine the financial resources to be allocated to the planned activities. This encourages the active incorporation of adaptation and climate-proofing measures.

Ultimately, ADAPT-PLAN aims to support the involved parties to demonstrate success and human impact, to foster nationwide replicability of the integration of CCA into planning and to enable the appropriate financing mechanisms. Accordingly, the project is promoting a strong framework for capacity development targeting its partners and stakeholders. Moreover, a major proportion of project funds is being spent on practical field-level CCA interventions to benefit 5,800 households.

To recognize and reinforce existing resilient practices and to instil CCA knowledge within the concerned communities, ADAPT-PLAN has applied Community-Based Resilience Analysis (CoBRA), a methodology developed by the UNDP Global Policy Centre on Resilient Ecosystems and Desertification (GC-RED). CoBRA was conceived to identify within the communities the adaptation priorities that can lead to spatial dimensions of building resilience. UNDP Malawi has worked with the UNDP GC-RED to conduct CoBRA assessments in the project’s hotspots, learning from previous experiences from Kenya, Uganda and Ethiopia.

So far, CoBRA findings have resulted in the development of three district-level community-based adaptation action plans, and have also been used to integrate CCA strategies into district development plans (2017–2022). A training of trainers (ToT) was provided to 45 district staff to be champions of resilience capacity building, district planning and budgeting. In total, 30 national-level Government staff (21 men and 9 women) and 55 district staff (19 women and 36 men) benefited from the capacity-building initiatives on CCA integration. Beyond the district level, a national CCA ToT manual was developed to provide clear and harmonized guidance on transformative approaches to CCA.

Also ensuing from CoBRA exercises, community-based adaptation and ecosystem-based adaptation tools have guided the design and implementation of various livelihood interventions and sources of income for vulnerable people in targeted hotspots. For instance, a total of 1,400 households were trained in CCA interventions of their choice. At the same time, 15 irrigation schemes were established, 18 fish ponds were constructed and commissioned, 17 beekeeping groups and 30 banana-production groups were formed, and 12,000 trees were planted. In Nkhata Bay, 33 livestock-production groups were established and provided with animals; in Ntcheu, 1,250 ha of land were planted with different citrus trees; while in Zomba, 9,200 grafted and non-grafted fruit-tree seedlings were procured and planted, among others.

During the 11th International Conference on Community-Based Adaptation (CBA), held in Kampala (Uganda) in June 2017, Malawi presented its successful experience of using CoBRA; the subsequent edition of the CBA was hosted in the Malawian capital Lilongwe in June 2018. These opportunities were important South-South exchange platforms for the review of the latest developments in community-based adaptation practice, policy and theory, with participants from Africa and the rest of the world.

Malawi’s CoBRA experience was also shared during the DRR/resilience community-of-practice event hosted by the UNDP Regional Service Centre for Africa in November–December 2017, and, together with the implementation of climate resilience-building activities, as part of a massive open online course on principles of resilience, organized in 2017 by the UNDP Global Programme on Nature for Development.

Provider Country: Ethiopia, Kenya and Uganda

Beneficiary Country: Malawi

Supported By: Global Environment Facility / Least Developed Countries Fund (GEF/LDCF) and UNDP

Implementing Agency: Ministry of Natural Resources, Energy and Mining of Malawi; Ministry of Finance, Economic Planning and Development of Malawi; Local Development Fund; Nkhata Bay District Council; Ntcheu District Council; and Zomba District Council

Project Status: On-going

Project Period: July 2014 – December 2019

Contact Person: Ben Twinomugisha; Climate Change and DRR Analyst; UNDP Malawi, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Thursday, 04 April 2019 14:43


This project aims to establish national data-collection, measurement and analytical systems to monitor the progress on national and international development policies and programmes. The project is expected to facilitate a coordinated and harmonized National Statistical System, as well as a functional and integrated National Monitoring and Evaluation System.


The quality and availability of socioeconomic data to inform policy and facilitate resource planning, prioritization and allocation are a major development challenge in Lesotho. The Bureau of Statistics (BOS) is mandated to produce national statistics in collaboration with other agencies within the National Statistical System. But absence of institutional alignment often leads to overlaps and contradictory results, thus hampering the access to and comparative use of data across the several institutions involved in data collection, analysis and management. Moreover, Lesotho’s weak capacities in terms of human and technical resources limit the use of statistical evidence in national development processes. In order to promote credible and consistent information in Lesotho, standardizing processes and ensuring that data collection abides by statistical norms are required. Provision of technical support to ministries and development agencies, and building the capacities of the BOS also need to be reinforced.


The Lesotho Data for Sustainable Development project aims at assisting the Government of Lesotho in the collection, analysis and dissemination of development data, and building institutional and technical skills for effective and accountable management of development programmes. The project intends to strengthen national and sectorial capacities to generate and utilize data, to facilitate programme monitoring and evaluation, and to advocate for evidence-based planning and results. The project is expected to drive the realization of the national, regional and global targets as enshrined in the National Strategic Development Plan and the Sustainable Development Goals, by promoting the availability of quality data, and strengthening leadership and stakeholder coordination in the collection, dissemination and use of development data. The project encompasses three interrelated components, namely:

– The definition of systematic tools for measuring development programmes;

– The promotion of literacy and innovations for data collection, dissemination and use; and

– The reinforcement of national leadership, institutional and technical capacities for effective coordination and sectorial engagement.

In the key area of capacity building, a Capacity Plan was elaborated for the identification of critical areas for improving competences, particularly at the Bureau of Statistics (BOS), to produce quality data and improve data use. To this end, the project has promoted a series of thematic visits and short courses in other African countries, in partnership with the following entities:

– The Tanzania National Bureau of Statistics, regarding methodology designs for horticulture-production surveys;

– Statistics Mauritius, regarding the design of questionnaires, reporting and overall data-reliability procedures for continuous multipurpose household surveys;

– The University of Pretoria (South Africa), regarding the implementation of outcome-based monitoring and evaluation;

– Stellenbosch University (South Africa), regarding public-sector monitoring, evaluation, accountability and good governance;

– The Uganda Bureau of Statistics, regarding the improvement of the Consumer Price Index (CPI) and the Producer Price Index (PPI); and

– The Uganda Prisons Services, regarding the production of high-quality correctional statistics.

The BOS has already incorporated many lessons learned through these South-South knowledge- and experience-exchange activities. For example, it has revised its tools for the planned agricultural census, updated methodological aspects of the CPI’s calculation and produced Lesotho’s first report on PPI. Moreover, to address challenges related to access to data, the BOS has upgraded its Open Data Portal (with the support of the African Development Bank), thus facilitating the production of customized reports, analysis and disaggregation, and enabling the development of district-specific data profiles.

Provider Country: Mauritius, South Africa, Tanzania and Uganda

Beneficiary Country: Lesotho

Supported by: European Commission and UNDP

Implementing Agency: Ministry of Development Planning of Lesotho, through the Bureau of Statistics (BOS) and the Department of Monitoring and Evaluation

Project Status: On-going

Project Period: November 2016 - December 2019

Contact Person: Mabulara Tsuene; Programme Specialist; UNDP Lesotho; This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Thursday, 04 April 2019 14:22


The Lesotho Hackathon is a competition aimed at promoting innovative solutions to address some of the identified challenges to financial inclusion in the country, focusing on the access to mobile financial services, especially among the poor and rural populations.


Access to formal and semi-formal financial services is limited in Lesotho, especially for low-income and rural populations. The majority of Basotho are excluded from the formal credit system, while restricted accessibility and high pricing of banking products further limit uptake. The Government of Lesotho has recognized this issue as a major constraint to job creation and income generation, and has prioritized financial inclusion in both the National Strategic Development Plan and the Financial Sector Development Strategy. Mobile money offers an important avenue to deliver financial services in Lesotho, as the use of mobile phones is widespread (with an estimated accessibility rate of 70% of adults). Yet, a 2016 research by UNDP on Lesotho’s mobile-money sector identified some systemic problems within the enabling business environment and highlighted four key areas that prevent mobile-money products from reaching scale and providing valuable financial services to underserved Basotho: awareness, acceptance, availability and affordability.


The Hackathon on Inclusive Financial Services is a competition that was organized as part of the Lesotho Scaling Inclusion through Mobile Money (SIMM) project, initiated in 2017 by the Ministry of Finance and UNDP Lesotho. The competition aimed at generating new ideas and facilitating mobile-money product diversification to unlock opportunities for improved access to financial services. Innovations in the mobile-money sector provide an opportunity for low-income and rural Basotho to gain access to credit, savings and insurance products. The objectives of the competition were:

– To design and develop next-generation applications to improve on existing digital financial systems and product offering;

– To create Lesotho-relevant technological solutions to solve local challenges;

– To facilitate the use of technology to bridge the financial-inclusion divide in Lesotho; and

– To leverage existing information, networks and human capacity to generate innovations.

Held in April 2018, the three-day Lesotho SIMM Hackathon provided a platform for young innovators to collaborate and explore their ideas, while interacting with private-sector and civil-society experts and practitioners in the fields of financial services and business development. The event targeted individuals with an interest in developing solutions to unique mobile-money ecosystem challenges in Lesotho, with extensive support provided by mentors and key stakeholders throughout the duration of the competition.

During the Hackathon, 62 participants in 17 teams developed prototype solutions that were presented to a panel of judges during a final pitching session. Assessed according to a range of fundamental criteria, the seven winning teams received a cash prize of US$5,000 each, as well as continued mentorship and technical support to enable the development of their solutions up to market introduction. In the evaluation of the initiative, the following key learning outcomes were highlighted:

– Linking innovation and financial inclusion;

– Skills development and mentorship; and

– Partnership, networking and collaboration opportunities.

The initiative eventually enabled the development of the following solutions:

– ITMAS (by TECHNIFY): e-ticket that enables minibus operators to bank their daily earnings instead of having to deal with cash, and offers commuters without mobile phones the possibility to pay electronically;

– SESIU (by TRIO): financial-management solution that offers members of savings groups the possibility to deposit subscriptions, monitor group performance or lend money over the system;

– Buddy Rescue (by NOVA): mobile application that assists old, visually impaired and semi-literate people to use mobile-money services;

– KYC (by Bundle-Up): mobile application that facilitates know-your-customer (KYC) processes by providing a depository for KYC documentation with verification through the use of the National Identification database; and

– Cashflow (by Cashflow): solution that tackles liquidity and agency challenges to financial-service accessibility, by providing a searchable and verifiable platform to remit funds.

For the organization of the Hackathon, UNDP Lesotho partnered with the private sector, NGOs and fintech startups to provide technical support and facilitate market interfacing into the programme. South-South partnerships were established with FinMark Trust (an independent non-profit organization based in South Africa, focused on the promotion of financial inclusion) and MEST Africa (a fintech mentorship programme based in Ghana that supports young African software entrepreneurs, through training and incubation). Prior experience-sharing engagement with UNDP Rwanda was facilitated through a peer-to-peer support organized by the UNDP Regional Service Centre for Africa. The initiative thus benefitted from technical support in shaping the concept and terms of reference, and maximizing stakeholder outreach.

Provider Country: Ghana, Rwanda and South Africa

Beneficiary Country: Lesotho

Supported by: UNDP and FinMark Trust

Implementing Agency: UNDP Lesotho, Ministry of Finance of Lesotho and FinMark Trust

Project Status: On-going

Project Period: 2018-2019

Contact Person: Mabulara Tsuene; Programme Specialist; UNDP Lesotho; This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Thursday, 04 April 2019 14:13


This project supports Sierra Leone’s efforts to improve the country’s investment climate, generate more local and foreign investments, and build the Government’s capacity to enter into sustainable and beneficial public-private partnerships. It also aims to strengthen the capacity of Bank of Sierra Leone (the central bank) to supervise and support financial inclusion and access to financial services in the country.


The instigation of the private sector’s role in the development of the country has been a key strategy of the Government of Sierra Leone, including in its current Medium-Term National Development Plan (2019-2023), dubbed “Education for Development”. Indeed, in order to meet critical challenges to sustainable development, such as poverty, youth unemployment, local economic development and environmental protection, the governmental efforts need to be supported by the active involvement of private actors, including in financial terms. Yet, the Government lacked the appropriate human resources needed to adequately unleash cooperation and partnerships with the existing underdeveloped private sector.


The overarching aims of the Private and Financial Sector Development project are:

– To improve the delivery of public services;

– To provide inclusive access to financial services;

– To expand income opportunities for the poor;

– To meet infrastructure needs;

– To increase the Government’s revenue-mobilization levels; and

– To promote and enable market-based public-private partnership (PPP) solutions, at both national and local levels, to help address pressing development challenges.

The main accomplishments of the project so far include:

– The development and finalization of the Public-Private Partnership Act, which was passed in Parliament in 2014.

– The establishment of institutional and regulatory frameworks for PPPs at the Office of the President, including the creation of a dedicated Public-Private Partnership Unit, to play a key role in ensuring that the Government attracts and benefits from private investment projects. The PPP Unit staff have been equipped with skills in economic viability analysis, best practices in procurement and effective negotiation strategies. In particular, four staff of the PPP Unit were trained in Ghana at the African Institute of Management Science in 2018, on identifying and appraising PPP projects and developing PPP policies. Trained staff of the PPP Unit have been deployed for instance in the implementation of two solar- and hydro-power projects, while overall there have been an improvement in the preparation of tender documents by the procurement staff of targeted ministries, departments and agencies, better management of the procurement process and greater participation in negotiations.

– The strengthening of the capacity of Bank of Sierra Leone to supervise and support financial inclusion and access to financial services, as well as to carry out research on inclusive growth and financial-policy analysis. The project has also supported the upgrading of the Bank’s ICT infrastructure, to improve management and oversight of an inclusive digital financial system, which should in turn allow the Bank to develop more robust capital-market operations.

– The elaboration of a range of PPP-related literature. Overall, improved familiarity and expertise with the PPP model have increased innovation in targeted local councils. A variant of the model – public-private-community partnership (PPCP), which explicitly involves the local community – has enhanced local infrastructure and service delivery, increased employment, and improved the revenue base of local councils. Makeni and Kenema city councils, for example, increased revenue collection in 2017 by an average of 50%, compared with a 25% increase in the previous year.

Provider Country: Ghana

Beneficiary Country: Sierra Leone

Supported by: UNDP and UNCDF

Implementing Agency: Public-Private Partnership Unit (Office of the President of Sierra Leone) and Bank of Sierra Leone

Project Status: On-going

Project Period: since January 2011

Contact Person: Milton Korseh-Hindowa; Economics Specialist; UNDP Sierra Leone, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Thursday, 28 March 2019 18:42


This project enables the Government of Malawi to climate-proof the policies, strategies and plans of the sectors of the economy most directly affected by climate change.


Malawi, ranked among the ten poorest states on the planet, suffers from recurring droughts but also severe floods. Extreme weather events are frequent, exerting a heavy economic and human toll. Aggressive deforestation to produce coal and expand fields exacerbates the consequences of global warming. Beyond the human toll, climate disasters have serious consequences for agriculture, fishing and the purchasing power of families living sometimes on less than 50 eurocents a day.


This project supports the Government of Malawi to climate-proof the policies, strategies and plans of the sectors of the economy most directly affected by climate change, in order to create an enabling policy and regulatory environment within which vulnerable communities will be empowered to adapt to these challenges in harmony with the environment.

As part of the initiative, following in the footsteps of Rwanda, Malawi with support from UNDP embarked to establish a national climate change fund to help put the country on a greener development path. At the request of the Government of Malawi, UNDP Facilitated South-South Cooperation between Malawi and Rwanda in the area of climate finance.  Results include: improved collaboration between energy regulators, improved policy coherence in the clean mini-grid sector, and increased awareness of investment portfolio planning for clean mini-grids; results under the latter include gazetting and approval by Malawi's parliament for the creation of a National Climate Change Fund; a roadmap for developing a revenue collection framework domestically for financing climate change initiatives.

Provider Country: UNDP Malawi, Rwanda

Beneficiary Country: Malawi

Supported by: UNDP Malawi, FORERWA – Rwanda.

Implementing Agency: Ministry of Natural Resources Energy and Mining,  Environmental Affairs Department

Project Status: Completed (operationally closed)

Project Period: 2012-2018

Contact Person: Etta M’mangisa; This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Thursday, 28 March 2019 15:32


The initiative supports the Malawi Electoral Commission to be able to hold free, inclusive, and credible tripartite elections in 2019. It assists in Malawi’s consensual development of procedural certainty among key electoral stakeholders such as Political Parties, Women Movements and the Security Sector.


Tripartite  elections (Presedential, Parliamentary,and Local Government)  are due to take place on 21st  May 2019 in Malawi. The country is in need of a conduicive  electoral environment to allow for a credible, free and transparent election. The elections are a unique opportunity for transformation of the elections management body to ensure shortfalls of the 2014 elections are addressed.


The project supports Malawi Electoral Commission and other stakeholders such as the media, CSOs, political parties, Malawi Police Service in supporting the organisation of the general elections due to take place in May 2019. The programme aims to complement and provide value addition to other work ongoing in the electoral environment to allow for a credible, free and transparent election. The Project is structured around five outputs: (1) The MEC is trusted by the public and political parties as an impartial entity possessing the capacity to administer and manage elections in accordance with regional and international obligations; (2) Women’s political empowerment throughout the electoral cycle is strengthened; (3) Enhanced ability  of key stakeholders, including political parties,  to contribute to orderly and inclusive elections; (4) Support to the Malawi Police Service (MPS) for heightened security around elections and (5) Effective and efficient management, partnership formation and monitoring and evaluation of the Project.

Through the project, the Malawi Electoral Commission  cooperated with the the Zambia Electoral Commission Legal Department to learn its functions. This resulted in operationalising the MEC legal department which was able to carry out its mandate such as development of legislation for the use of the National ID and training of alternative dispute resolution mechanisms. The legal department was also critical in the development of the complaints and disputes handling guidelines which have been gazzetted as part of the electoral law.   The MEC further cooperated with the Ghana EMB to learn on the use of technology in electoral process which resulted in the smooth running of the voter registration process with 6,859,570 Malawians registered. The voters roll is the cleanest and credible thus far as it eliminated duplications, underage registrants and foreigners which has guranteed One Person, One Identity, One Vote. 

Provider Country: UNDP Malawi, Zambia, Ghana

Beneficiary Country: Malawi

Supported By: UNDP Malawi

Implementing Agency: Malawi Electoral Commission

Project Status: On-going

Project Period: 2017 - 2019

Contact Person: Richard Cox, Chief Technical Advisor- Elections; This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Thursday, 28 March 2019 10:29


The Protocol Management Information System is a secure web-based system that improves the availability and accuracy of data on diplomatic immunities and privileges. The system will benefit diplomatic missions, public agencies and citizens by providing easy and efficient access to the archived records. It is set to become the gold standard for diplomatic corps and will ensure the digital archives, are future-proofed.


As part of the process to automate government institutions, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has faced the need for establishing an innovative, cost effective, convenient and customized system to meet the needs of diplomats -  particularly in administering privileges and immunities of the diplomatic corps which has been taking over 5-10 days for one diplomat to get accredited.


Uganda’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA) launched a new e-system to manage the administration of privileges and immunities to foreign diplomats. The new Protocol Management Information System (PIMIS),developed in partnership with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and with South Africa, improves delivery of protocol and consular services at MoFA through the automation of its protocol service processes including; arrival notification, accreditation and Identity card (IDs), tax identification, permits and passes; motor vehicle registration, driver’s license, customs clearance; tax refund; airport pass; aircraft clearance. The new system responds to the Government’s national electronic framework which recognises Information Communication Technology as a mechanism to foster economic development and e-governance as an important way to improve service delivery. This was mainly aimed at providing quick access to information, reduce workload and save time for the Ministry and for the Diplomatic agencies.

As part of the project, a bench-marking visit to South Africa informed the development of the Protocol Management Information System where the Ministry of Foreign Affairs was able to move from manual system and automate the Management Information System (PIMS) for the administration of protocol services for the diplomatic corps. The system was  launched in July 2018. The Country office also provided computers (6)for the Ministry to set up a training lab for Diplomatic agencies on the use of the system.The support also leveraged partnerships and the ministry was able to mobilize further support ($300,000) from the Trademark East Africa that is supporting further development of the system to enable linkage to other Government E-Systems.

Provider Country: UNDP Uganda, South Africa

Beneficiary Country: Uganda

Supported By: UNDP Uganda

Implementing Agency: Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Uganda

Project Status: On-going

Project Period: 2016 - 2020

Contact Person: Innocent Fred  Ejolu, Team Leader - Instititional Effectiveness Programme-UNDP. E-mail : This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Thursday, 28 March 2019 10:20


The project’s main objective is to support Uganda’s transformation through Institutional development, transparency and accountability.


The Government has stepped up its efforts to address corruption in the public sector as a result of increasing public pressure. There has been public demands for improved service delivery, and restructuring of government institutions to remove duplication, wastage, and improve efficiency.


The programme aims at enhancing government effectiveness through capacity building for institutional development, transparency and accountability in order to deliver on commitments to anti-corruption conventions. Through Leadership development the programme is supporting accountability and public sector management institutions to strengthen negotiation, standardization, integrity, oversight, transparency, and accountability particularly in the extractives and infrastructure sectors.

The programme worked with the Inspectorate of Government (IG) to implement the Leadership Code Act through the establishment of the Online System for Declaration of Assets and Liabilities by Political Leaders and Public Servants. The System helped increase the percentage of leaders declaring their assets – which increased compliance from below 70% to 90%. This is a big step towards promoting transparency among public officials. In addition, the Asset Recovery Unit of Inspectorate of Government was strengthened

resulting in the extraction of court orders (recoveries) worth over one billion Uganda shillings.

In the framework of the programme, the Inspectorate of Government was supported to benchmark with Rwanda's Ombudsman's online systems to inform improvements in Uganda's Inspectorate of Government Online Declaration System for Income, Assets and Liabilities of Public Officials. The Ugandan team also shared Uganda's experience  and the visit facilitated the creation of a platform for continuous sharing between the Ombudsman Office of Rwanda and the Inspectorate of Government in Uganda regarding updating and enhancing security of the Online Systems. The lessons have informed ongoing strengthening of the Inspectorate of Government system especially inter-agency coordination in the management of declarations and verification of incomes, assets and liabilities of public officials. The Inspectorate has thereafter developed a Leader Support System (LSS) that will facilitate self registration  and improve compliance to over 95% in the 2019 declarations.

The Inspectorate of Government, in partnership with Ministry of Information and Communications Technology has started processes  to integrate Online Declaration System to other government systems including the Uganda Revenue Authority data base, mobile telephones simcard regisration, Land registrarion at Ministry of Lands, among others,

Provider Country: UNDP Uganda, Rwanda

Beneficiary Country: Uganda

Supported by: UNDP Uganda

Implementing Agency: Inspectorate of Government

Project Status: On-going

Project Period: 2016-2020

Contact Person: Innocent Ejolu, Team Leader – Instititional Effectiveness Programme-UNDP. E-mail : This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Thursday, 28 March 2019 10:05


The initiative provides technical support to stakeholders for the implementation of devolution at the county and national levels as well as the intergovernmental interface between these two levels of government to ensure that devolution is well established, and the devolved units are able to deliver services to their citizens in an efficient and effective manner with a particular focus on governance, environment, and gender.


Devolution began after the 2013 general elections with an immediate delegation of very wide ranging sectoral and service delivery mandates to 47 newly created counties. Challenges were twofold: first, a requisite enabling environment of institutional, policy, and legal structures and instruments needed to be created very rapidly at national and county level; second, a minimal standard of continual service delivery needed to be maintained (i.e. a devolution without disruption) to ensure citizen needs were met while at the same time developing county capacity to increase service delivery standards going forward.


The Kenyan experience with devolution has been so successful that other counties have visited to learn how this enormous structural change was accomplished in a short time period (e.g. Liberia, Nepal) as have scholars from the U.S., Norway, Japan and the U.K.

The project has utilized a successful model of peer-to-peer learning and strengthening national institutions to provide technical assistance and training to counties. The ability of the programme to engender peer learning on appropriate models relevant to the political economy and needs of counties will lead to greater sustainability and reduce reliance on external support.

This approach has ensured that technical assistance and training are replicable and sustainable. As best practices emerge within counties, these are shared between counties with several being picked up and implemented; for example, a citizen complaints, complements, and information centre was established in one country to improve both service delivery and accountability which inspired other counties to see this model and develop their own such centres in 2018, this follows four other counties who have developed their own such centres based on the UNDP pilot. Similar exchanges of best practices between counties have been utilized in M&E, Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR), gender equity, and public participation.

UNDP has also been supporting county governments embrace change and institutionalize a performance culture using an intra-county and national-to-county support mode by developing a Performance Management System (PMS) to improve county public service. Pilot counties were identified (Laikipia, Taita Taveta, Makueni, Narok, Bungoma, Kericho, Baringo, Kilifi) and supported with PMS champions who are able to visit each other to promote intra-country south-south learning based on best PMS practices.  

While intra-county learning is the dominant mode of of the project, some international experiences have also been utilized. The Council of Governors (CoG) participated in the open webinar by Network of Regional Governments for Sustainable Development (Nrg4SD) on localising SDGs through regional governments and shared this experience on localising SDGs with CoG’s member counties who subsequently mainstreamed SDGs in their five-year County Integrated Development Plans with five counties appointing county SDG Champions and committing to submit a voluntary report on progress at the HLPF 2019.

Provider Country: UNDP Kenya

Beneficiary Country: Kenya

Supported By: UNDP Kenya in partnership with UN Women

Implementing Agency: Primary IP: Ministry of Devolution and ASALS; Other IPs: Council of Governors, Commission on Revenue Allocation, Intergovernmental Budget and Economic Council, Kenya School of Government, GoK MDAs mandated on environment and gender. Responsible Parties: 23 county governments

Project Status: On-going

Project Period: 2014 - 2019

Contact Person: Mary Njoroge; Programme Manager, UNDP Devolution Project; UNDP Kenya; UNON Complex, Gigiri; Block M Level 3, P.O. Box 30218, 00100; Tel:  +254 20 762 4441; Cell: +254 795753786; e-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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