The AfDB needs to upgrade its Engagement with CSOs
Following CSOs letter sent on June 2021 to African Development Bank Group (AfDB) on its Integrated Safeguards System (ISS) review process, the AfDB confirmed that a consultation “in the near future” with civil society and other external stakeholders. Till today, no public information has been made publicly available on the AfDB’s website.
Today, Arab Watch Coalition with more than 70 civil society organizations from across the African continent and international allies addressed a follow-up letter to the AfDB on the nature and the process of this ongoing review. In this letter, civil society calls for more transparent, effective, and inclusive consultation process.
The ISS review presents an opportunity for the AfDB to upgrade its policies and practices to align with the highest international standards and reflect the goals of the AfDB as well as the needs and rights of the people, communities and regional member countries with whom it collaborates.
The ISS review is a significant opportunity for the institution to promote transparency and accountability by publicly disclosing information and engage with a large number of civil society and right-holders around Africa who are at the center of its funded activities around African countries and might have a major role to play in this ISS development and implementation on the ground. For this, CSOs recommends the AfDB to:
- Publicly disclose information about the review, including the timelines, a consultation plan, and an overview of the scope on its website and on other relevant platforms.
- Conduct meaningful, transparent, and inclusive consultations with relevant right-holders and CSOs, by providing language accessibility and adequate periods for comments;
- Publish the consultation reports and final draft, in all official languages of countries of operation;