Improving public infrastructure in primaries schools
This experience was presented as candidate for the IOPD Award for Best Practices in Citizen Participation 2015
Summary of the candidacy:
At the beginning of our mandate, we performed an assessment of the situation in our city. We have noted the poor conditions and lack of education infrastructure, especially public elementary schools, which explain the specific orientation of our program during our mandate. In parallel, we have received training on participatory budgeting and social responsibility offered by the World Bank Group.
In view of the youth of the city (3 legislatures for now), we managed to convince the local council and the executive office of the importance of the process of "participatory budgeting" to mobilize people and resources to meet the challenges local investment. Our action is to promote social responsibility in Madagascar in a general sense to improve local governance and support the decentralization process.
The participatory budget process has been used to mobilize civic engagement around local priorities. In our case, it was confirmed that education is also a priority of citizens (consensus municipal officials and taxpayers). The experiment was also carried out in response to natural disasters, which have increased the need for rehabilitation of school infrastructure that had just devastated. r municipality is one of the youngest municipalities in Madagascar with a tax system still underdeveloped. In this context, participatory budgeting has proven to be an exceptional opportunity to mobilize taxpayers to fund municipal infrastructure tool. In fact, through this process, citizens had the opportunity not only to define their priorities, but also to participate in the implementation and effective monitoring of projects identified. This device allowed them to see firsthand the responsible use of their contribution and to intervene at any time if the need for greater transparency through accountability mechanisms.
The Municipality has received the methodological support of Project Governance and Institutional Development (PGDI www.pgdi.goc.mg), funded by the World Bank Group in Madagascar.
This methodological support (described in the Guide for Participatory Budget in Madagascar which was published in Malagasy) was materialized by the intervention of the facilitators, who accompanied the local actors in the process (neighborhood forums, community forum, the exercise of accountability, monitoring committee, etc.). Moreover, the process has favored the emergence of innovative mechanisms to mobilize additional financing that emerged from the consultations and beneficiaries. For example, some students have agreed to contribute to fund participation by reserving part of their pocket money for snack because they thought they were interested parties and the main beneficiaries of the project.