CSOs Comments on the AfDB’s DAI Policy Implementation Review
In February 4th, and upon request from civil society groups around the African continent, a written contribution from their side was submitted to the Records Management and Information Disclosure Secretariat of the African Development Bank (AfDB) regarding the ongoing review of the implementation of its Disclosure and Access to Information Policy (DAI-Policy).
While the policy review appears to be a positive step forward, its implementation on the ground lacks factual commitments to Transparency and Openness. The reviewing process as we know was obscure, and opportunities for engagement with relevant stakeholders were very restricted. No information is made available on the AfDB’s website, including the reviewing agenda, timelines and accessible mechanisms of engagement for local communities and civil society groups.
In the submission on DAI Policy, CSOs requested different recommendations that can make the Policy effective and applicable on the ground:
- Maximizing the AfDB information disclosure about its operations with the accessible language and format, by prioritizing local communities in the African continent, including affected communities – the purported beneficiaries of development projects;
- Make publicly available information about the bank’ mission, strategies and activities, adopting public disclosure measures that make information available and accessible to all stakeholders, while providing an ample time to all stakeholders to include their inputs and comments;
- Encourage the country offices to commit to the citizen engagement policy of the bank that requires effective engagement with local communities and civil society groups.
This submission to the AfDB is urging not only effective engagement with local communities and civil society groups, but also ensuring the importance of transparency and access to information, for the AfDB to adapt a role model of good governance inside the bank as a development bank that put communities interests on the head of their agendas and to play its role as a bank for people not only for investments.