The Management Agency of ESAP2 holds a Communication and Documentation Award for SAIPs

The Management Agency of Ethiopia Social Accountability Program, Phase 2, (ESAP2) organized a Communication and Documentation Award for Social Accountability Implementing Partners (SAIPs) at an event held at Harmony Hotel on 04 November 2015.

 

In his welcoming note, Rolf Hunink, team leader of ESAP2acknowledged the mediating role played by SAIPs to promote SA in most parts of Ethiopia. Mentioning different experiences from the field,he said,“It is justified to conclude that in the previous period SA has been successfully introduced into the lives of many Ethiopians.” According to the team leader, the Government of Ethiopia as well as the Development Partners have expressed their support to continue SA in the country following the successful implementation of ESAP2 at field level.Rolf explained to the event’s participants about a transition period that connects ESAP2 to its future follow-up. He said, “It is possible to continue and consolidate the SA concept in Ethiopia over the next eighteen months until June 2017, which is seen as the implementation period of the ‘bridging phase’. As of July 2017, the intention is to start a new follow-up program of ESAP2 where there is room for scaling up SA to new woredas and related kebeles.”

 

State Minister of Finance and Economic Development (MoFED)and Chairman of the ESAP2 Steering Committee,Dr Abraham Tekeste, stated that SA is part of the Ethiopian government’s good governance program and is a matter of building democracy in the country. Addressing participants, he said “SArequires a lot of effort, commitment and persistent engagement. There are challenges that come along with it.I hope through the process of implementing SA, members of the civic society,service receiversand the government have taken some experiences on how to collaborate with each other.  We have built a foundation of trust among various stakeholders.” The State Minister mentioned that service improvements are also part of the results gained through Social Accountability. He urged members of the civic society, service providers, service receivers and development partners to continue the SA momentum in the bridging phase as well.

The Management Agency awarded Social Accountability Implementing Partners (SAIPs) and Social Accountability Committee (SAC) Heroes in three categories. In the SAC Hero category, WondimuOumer (Meskerem Secondary School Director – Addis Ababa), DawitBedane (Former teacher, pensioner – Bishoftu) and WorkineshKumela (Health Extension Worker – Ginchi) were awarded as first, second and third winners respectively for their contribution to the community. Social Accountability Implementing Partners that were awarded in The Most Significant Change Story category are Action for Self-Reliance (AFSR), Ethiopian Interfaith Forum for Development, Dialogue and Action (EIFDDA)/Ethiopian Muslims Relief and Development Association (EMRDA) and Ogaden Welfare and Development Association (OWDA)/God for People Relief and Development Organization (GPRDO).The stories were chosen for demonstrating how service improvements brought through SA have impacted people’s lives.Participatory videos submitted by Social Accountability Implementing Partners Redeem the Generation (RTG), MigbareSenay Children and Family Support Organization andAction for Self-Reliance (AFSR) won this year’s Participatory Video Oscar.

“Social Accountability in Action”, a documentary that was in the making for the past eighteen months and shows the process of Social Accountability in Ethiopia made its premiere on the event. The Management Agency plans to screen the documentary to potentials users and providers of basic services throughout the country. 

In the afternoon session when Executive Directors convened to deliberate on issues of SA during the bridging phase, Theater for Social Accountability (TSA) titled “Kemeteyek…” was presented to participants. Ideas and suggestions that have been designed by the Management Agency to make an optimal use of the time and resources that are available during the ’bridging phase’ werediscussed in groups.

 

Bogalech Gebre, Executive Director of KMG Ethiopia, said SAIPs have discussed on how to engage themselves in SA in a new form and keep the SA phenomenon alive within their respective community. She said, “At this point, the vital question is not how to sustain SA, it is how to make it habitual, common, real and part of our everyday life. I am accountable; my government is accountable to the standards it had set itself. How can our country keep that standard, quality, quantity, affordability and coverage within woredas and kebeles? ‘It takes two to tango’ as they say so both service receivers and service providers are responsible for the sustainability of SA. SA is a blessing that has come to our country and we must make it a culture rather than just a phenomenon”.

WorkenehDenekew is a consultant engaged in Social Accountability since ESAP1. Recapping the overall discussion that took place between the MA and Executive Directors of SAIPs, he said, “the main outcome is that everybody agreed on keeping the momentum of Social Accountability in the country. That’s what counts. We also discussed about how to manage the bridging period. I am satisfied about the mind set of the Executive Directors that this is their business and they are bound to roll the ball of SA forward.”

Representatives from the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development (MoFED), Executive Directors of 108 Social Accountability Implementing Partners and sub-partners (SAIPs), various SA stakeholders, service receivers, Development partners and Members of the press were part of the event.