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8 I n the early years of independ- with improved salaries for those who ence African countries made a would remain in service. But Gelasi deliberate effort to build human Mutahaba has observed: capacity. They established schools, Building health facilities, and universities One singularly significant Institutional dedicated to producing the human shortcoming was the conspicu- Capacity for skills that the newly established ous absence of effective pay Governance states needed. Education was recog- and incentives reform, which nized as the bedrock of the future, remain critical to sustainable producing the human capital to meet capacity building. Conse- the needs of the continent. quently, morale and discipline in the public service remained The policy shift by international low, and unethical conduct in financial institutions in the 1980s ways of bribery and corrup- de-emphasized the value of univer- tion were on the rise. In the sities and pressured governments to circumstances, service deliv- invest less in higher education. As ery continued to deteriorate in universities decayed, many trained most countries throughout the professionals left for greener pas- 1990s (Mutahaba 2002, 12). tures. Between 1986 and 1996, of the 1,708 Africans awarded PhDs in A need for new capacities was driv- U.S. and Canadian universities, only en by the shift to market economies 687 returned to Africa (ECA n.d.-b). and to programs of economic growth And the emergence of oppressive led by the private sector, demands military and authoritarian regimes for transparency and accountabil- accelerated the brain drain, leav- ity as part of good governance, the ing many universities in dire need of emerging global market and the human and financial resources to run advent of information technology. even skeletal programs. Despite many efforts, the capaci- ty-building challenges for African The structural adjustment programs countries continue to persist. The of the World Bank and International capacity deficit remains one of the Monetary Fund also had a devas- major constraints to putting Africa tating effect on the morale of civil on the path to accelerated growth servants. Governments were forced and sustainable development. It is to reduce the public service, and the critical missing link in Africa’s many civil servants lost their means development and democratization. of livelihood. The freeze in recruit- ment that was subsequently insti- Human development entails enor- tuted directly undermined capac- mous socioeconomic transfor- ity building for service delivery and mation, requiring the building severely undermined the caliber of of the appropriate capacities to the civil service. ensure its achievement (Mohid- din 2007). African governments The downsizing strategy promised have recently launched capacity- a “lean and muscular civil service” building initiatives such as the New 241 African Partnership for Develop- Box 8.1 Definitions of capacity development ment (NEPAD) and the African Peer Review Mechanism (APRM). 1. “Capacity building is the ability of individuals, groups, institutions and NEPAD promotes sustainable organisations to identify and solve development problems over time” human development, eradication (Peter Morgan 1996). of poverty, continental and politi- cal integration and global competi- 2. Capacity development is a concept which is broader than organisational tiveness. APRM is a mechanism development since it includes an emphasis on the overall system, envi- to promote the political, social and ronment or context within which individuals, organisations and societies economic objectives of NEPAD and operate and interact (and not simply a single organisation (UNDP 1998). ensure that participating countries observe its principles and practices. 3. Capacity development is “any system, effort or process . . . which To achieve NEPAD’s objective of includes among its major objectives strengthening the capability of promoting sustainable human devel- elected chief executive officers, department and agency heads and pro- opment, it is necessary to mobi- gramme managers in general purpose government to plan, implement, lize human and material resources manage or evaluate policies, strategies or programs designed to impact and forge cooperation and partner- on social conditions in the community” (Cohen 1993). ship between government and civil society organisations (CSOs) at the 4. “Capacity is the combination of people, institutions and practices that national and international levels. permits countries to reach their development goals. . . . Capacity build- ing is . . . investment in human capital, institutions and practices” (World The African Governance Forum Bank 1998). (AGF) that convened at Kigali, Rwanda, in May 2006 (AGF VI) 5. Capacity building is any support that strengthens an institution’s ability recognized that capacity is key to to effectively and efficiently design, implement and evaluate development ensuring good governance and the activities according to its mission (UNICEF-Namibia 1996). delivery of services. It dedicated its next forum, AGF VII, to issues of 6. “Capacity building is a process by which individuals, groups, institutions, capacity building for development organisations and societies enhance their abilities to identify and meet and the building of the capable state. development challenges in a sustainable manner (CIDA 1996). From AGF VII, which convened at Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso, in 7. Capacity development: “The process by which individuals, groups, October 2007, a consensus emerged organisations, institutions and societies increase their abilities: to perform that African governments must functions solve problems and achieve objectives; to understand and deal address capacity of the institutions with their development need in a broader context and in a sustainable of governance so that they can deliv- manner” (UNDP 1997). er services efficiently, effectively, equitably and predictably. 8. Capacity strengthening is an ongoing process by which people band sys- tems, operating within dynamic contexts, enhance their abilities to devel- What is capacity building? op and implement strategies in pursuit of their objectives for increased Capacity building—or “capac- performance in a sustainable way” (Lusthaus et al. 1995). ity development”, the term wide- ly used in the 1990s—has been Source: From Lusthaus et al. 1999, 3. defined in varying ways by differ- ent development agencies. Some use narrow definitions that focus 242 African Governance Report II on strengthening organisations and skills, while others use a broader Box 8.2 Key capacity notions and elements at three levels definition that encompasses levels of of capacity development capacity from the individual to the whole society. Box 8.1 is a sample Level of of definitions from individuals and capacity Notion of capacity Elements of capacity organisations. Individual The will and ability Knowledge, skills, values, to set objectives and attitude, health, awareness. Generally defined, capacity build- achieve them using ing is the ability of people, institu- ones own knowledge tions and societies to perform func- and skills. tions, solve problems and set and Organisation Anything that will Human resources achieve objectives. To be success- positively influence (capacities of individuals in ful, capacity development needs to organisational organisations). take place on the individual, insti- performance. Physical resources (facilities, tutional and societal levels (box equipment, material, etc.) 8.2). At the individual level capacity and capital. development relates to the knowl- edge, skills, values and ability of Intellectual organisational a person to perform set tasks in resources (organisational a conducive environment. At the strategy, strategic planning, organisational level it suggests the business know-how, resources—human, material, physi- production technology, cal and technological—available to program management). perform organisational responsibili- Leadership of managers. ties effectively. At the societal level Environment A conducive Formal institutions (laws, it involves the formal institutions, environment-political, policies, ordinances). rules, procedures, processes and legal, economic, social and human infrastructures Informal institutions social and cultural available for achieving collective (customs, culture, norms). promotive of individual goals defined by that society. and organisational Social capital, social performance. infrastructure. There are some core principles to guide effective capacity development Source: Adapted from UNESCO-IICBA 2006, 6. at the organisational or societal level: ownership, sustainability, participa- tion, mobilization of local resources dynamic interactions between the and change processes. All capac- people managing the institution and ity development efforts and training the laws, rules, norms and traditions must be geared toward better per- of the institution. The performance formance of an institution or society of the people will be determined by in an inward looking, sustainable three factors: availability of support- manner (see box. 8.3). ive infrastructures, equipment and financial resources; their technical The capacity of an institution skills and professional competence is essentially the product of the and their commitment and integrity Building Institutional Capacity for Governance 243 visions and values and creates an Box 8.3 Principles of effective capacity development environment for human and insti- tutional enhancement. Likewise, Ownership. The people or organisation for which a capacity building project is capacity-building efforts must nec- meant must claim it, own it and drive it. Externally driven capacity development essarily be long-term and systemic. programmes are often fraught with tensions and contradictions and may not be An evaluation of World Bank sup- durable. port for capacity building in Africa observed: Sustainability. In crafting capacity building programmes adequate attention and strategic planning should be focused on its sustainability. The evaluation’s findings underscore the importance of Participation. Capacity development programmes must be participatory, espe- approaching capacity build- cially for its recipients. Improving knowledge and skills, changing organisation- ing in Africa as a core objec- al culture and introducing modern techniques in institutions should be based tive and ensuring that capacity on the active involvement of the major stakeholders of those projects. building support is country- owned, results-oriented and Mobilization of local resources. Capacity development premised on external evidence-based. The challeng- resources, whether human or material, is not sustainable. For capacity devel- es to improving public-sector opment to be indigenous, it must mobilize local resources in order to gain performance in Africa—posed commitment. by political and institutional characteristics, weak incen- Change process. Capacity development must be a change process. Ulti- tives, poor working con- mately, it should change the actions, processes and culture of an individual or ditions and emigration of organisation for better performance. This requires clear distillation of issues of highly skilled professionals— capacity for whom, for what and in whose interests. necessitate the priority of long-term efforts (World Bank 2005, xvii). in observing the rules and regula- tions, norms and conventions of the Capacity deficits in Africa institution (Mohiddin 2007). When they achieved independence, many African countries inherited In essence, capacity building is about weak and inefficient governance people, who have to be trained, institutions, designed to serve colo- equipped, sufficiently remunerated nial interests but of little value for and adequately motivated in the post-independent states. From the efficient uses and management of beginning, the new African states resources. It should also be recog- needed to build capacity. But poli- nized that capacity building is more cies of the development donors did than a technical exercise. It is rooted not have a positive impact on capac- in the political economy as well as ity building because they lacked the legal and cultural traditions of internal ownership. the country, and any durable capac- ity building must take those fac- Authoritarian rule in many African tors into account. Equally important countries in the early years of inde- for capacity development is leader- pendence resulted in weak institu- ship that articulates strong national tional capacity building and further 244 African Governance Report II undermined the already weak capac- of this support has been directed ity bequeathed by colonial rulers. toward the public sector. Military governments undermined institutions of good governance, How well has the World Bank‘s namely, the constitution, political money been used? A Bank evalua- parties, the media and the judiciary. tion report noted: “[D]espite sub- Finally, the structural adjustment stantial progress in reforming the programs of the Bretton Woods overall policy environment in the institutions in the 1980s under- developing world and the steady mined the capacity of public insti- improvement in the quality of tutions in health and education, as project lending, development out- well as the civil service and public comes are still falling short of expec- enterprises (ECA 2005). tations, especially in Africa. Much of this shortfall is attributable to lag- In the last few decades a great deal ging capacity development” (World of resources has been committed Bank n.d., 1). This suggests that to building capacity in Africa. The capacity-development initiatives and Technical World Bank, the African Devel- strategy of the international devel- assistance opment Bank, the United Nations opment partners in Africa have been programs fill Development Programme, the either inappropriate or ineffective in capacity gaps Economic Commission for Afri- scaling up Africa’s capacity to the ca, the Organisation for Economic required level for better economic rather than build Cooperation and Development and management and performance. On sustained country many governments under bilateral the World Bank’s role, the report capacity. Thus they arrangements have been among the further noted that “the Bank’s sup- did not often lead major players in advocating for, pro- port for capacity building in Africa to improved and moting or funding capacity building remains less effective than it could sustained public- initiatives. be” (World Bank 2005, viii). sector performance Almost a quarter of the US$55 bil- In many respects technical assist- lion of total annual overseas devel- ance measures and training have opment assistance is directed to been found wanting. Technical capacity building, mainly through assistance programs fill capacity technical assistance. The World gaps rather than build sustained Bank has also been a major provider country capacity. Thus they did of resources for capacity building by not often lead to improved and sus- supporting a wide range of interven- tained public-sector performance tions through its country lending because they failed to apply the tools and non-lending programs and dedi- within a broad framework of human cated corporate and regional enti- resource management and link them ties. “Between 1995 and 2004, the to organisational and institutional Bank provided some $9 billion in developments. lending and close to $900 million in grants and administrative budget to Seeing that the numerous train- support capacity building in Africa” ing interventions and other capac- (World Bank 2005, vii). The bulk ity building initiatives over the years Building Institutional Capacity for Governance 245 have had little impact, some have Critical rethinking over the years started to question the value of con- has led to a growing global consen- tinuing with such exercises. They sus that: doubt their effectiveness and whether new skills were acquired and trans- Capacity development is a lated into improved organisation- long-term process, rarely ame- al performance. According to one nable to seeking quick results report, “Training interventions have through shortcuts. It is, above generally been funded without an all, an endogenous course of organisational training needs assess- action that builds on existing ment or a comprehensive trainings capacities and assets. As an plan. Staff is being trained for spe- endogenous voluntary proc- cific tasks before they are in posi- ess, capacity development can tions to use the training, or before be supported or distorted by measures have been taken to help external interventions. Fur- retain them” (World Bank 2005, thermore, to be successful, Capacity 32). The traditional approach, which capacity development needs to development focused on creating or reorganizing take place at three cross-linked has emerged in government units and building indi- levels: the individual, institu- vidual skills, could not by itself foster tional as well as societal levels. reaction to the poor improved public-sector performance results of initiatives because it failed to address the insti- A central element of this con- based on technical tutional context in which organi- sensus is that capacity devel- cooperation sations and individuals operated. ops and takes root where The institutional context is critical incentives—monetary and to ensure that the necessary incen- non-monetary—are favora- tives and rewards are provided for ble, and dwindles where they improved public-sector performance. are perverse. These incentives Training can be only part of the shape the demand for capacity, human capacity-building solution. as when governance arrange- ments enable user, parliamen- Capacity development has emerged tary, and citizen oversight to in reaction to the poor results of hold governments account- initiatives based on technical coop- able for performance. Incen- eration. The new approach empha- tives also sustain the supply of sizes that root causes of poverty, national capacity as when pay illiteracy and ill health are lack of polices reward highly-skilled capacity in government to design professionals for remaining and implement proper development in the African public sector, strategies and the inability of soci- and the enabling environment ety to hold government accountable for private investment har- for its actions. It argues development nesses domestic entrepreneur- achievements will be scalable and ial skills, rather than adding sustainable only if political and eco- to “brain drain”. As with the nomic institutions function properly effectiveness of overall devel- (World Bank 2005). opment assistance, ownership, 246 African Governance Report II local championship, commit- information revolution and techno- ment, and strong leadership logical progress (Sako and Ogiogio are seen in the emerging con- 2002). To deal with the challenges sensus as prerequisites for sus- Africa needs capable states.1 Yet the tainable capacity development. state in many African countries is On the external side, the gap weak, due to four related conditions filling approach that tended described in a recent World Bank to be donor driven needs to be study: replaced by a more “organic” approach that nurtures exist- First, the basic socioeconomic ing capacities (World Bank conditions in Africa, though n.d., 2). improving in some ways, constitute a weak founda- Capacity-building tion for public sector capaci- challenges ties. The overall level of pov- Africa’s development in the 1980s erty both creates enormous was so disappointing that some need for effective public sector Africa’s characterized it as a lost decade performance and limits the development for development. Several factors— human and financial resources in the 1980s ineffective policies, outright mis- available to the public sector. was disappointing, management (in some countries), but after some a heavy external debt burden, poor Second, specific political and painful economic governance and conflicts that pre- institutional characteristics reforms as well as cipitated the massive economic in African countries inhibit decline in the early 1980s—were effective public sector per- growing political responsible for the poor perform- formance. The state has yet liberalization, ance. But after some painful eco- to integrate formal rules with some notable nomic reforms as well as growing informal norms in ways that improvements have political liberalization and economic ensure good governance… been registered in stability, some notable improvements the last decade have been registered in the last dec- Third, . . . public sector in ade. But a lot more needs to be done Africa exhibits low bureau- to put Africa on the road to sustain- cratic quality, weak mecha- able development. nism of accountability, and high levels of corruption. The continent is still faced with the enormous challenges of poverty; Last, globalization is widen- the HIV/AIDS pandemic; promo- ing gaps within Africa and tion of democracy, rule of law, con- between Africa and other flict prevention, management and regions. While globaliza- post-conflict reconstruction; human tion offers opportunities to capital flight; private-sector devel- help African countries to opment; revitalization of universities enhance their national capac- and research institutions; regional ities—through easier access cooperation and integration; trade; to global knowledge—it also the burden of external debt; the undermines their efforts by Building Institutional Capacity for Governance 247 contributing to widening demands, not only for more effective domestic income gaps, pull- capacity building, but also for these ing highly trained talent out of efforts to be more directly linked to Africa, and accentuating Afri- results (World Bank n.d.). ca’s lack of competitiveness in international research and Gaps in governance development and investment. capacity in Africa About 70,000 highly qualified Good governance helps to create an professionals and experts leave environment of peace, stability and the continent annually. While security in which people can be pro- migration brings in remittanc- ductive and creative, build wealth es, which help reduce poverty, and employment and promote it depresses public sector per- human development and alleviate formance in such crucial areas poverty. For the institutions of gov- as health, science and technol- ernance to perform their functions ogy, and economic manage- effectively, they must be endowed If African ment (World Bank 2005, 2–3). with the appropriate capacities. countries are to Because sustainable development forge ahead with The challenges posed by the fore- thrives in an environment of good going conditions require long-term, governance, if African countries are their development systemic approaches. to forge ahead with their develop- visions, they ment visions, they must build their must build their To promote development, many governance capacities. governance African countries have launched a capacities Poverty Reduction Strategy Pro- Some express doubt about the sin- gram (PRSP) and set their aims cerity of African governments’ at the Millennium Development alleged commitment to good gov- Goals (MDGs). The PRSPs require ernance. Political scientist Pierre enhanced capacities to realize the Englebert asks, “[I]f we and Afri- economic and social foundations can governments know that good of poverty reduction. Because local governance promotes development governments are at the forefront of and yet there have been no general service delivery, particular atten- improvements in governance, do tion needs to be given to build- African governments want develop- ing and enhancing their capacities. ment?” He adds, “[T]here is a poten- World Bank and IMF reviews of tial contradiction here between the the PRSPs in 2002 underscored the normative implications of the gov- poor capacity at the local govern- ernance agenda and the self-inter- ment level and, more importantly, est maximization of all elites….We the inability to use existing capacity cannot take for granted the desire of effectively, constraining preparation, governments to promote develop- implementation and monitoring and ment” (Englebert 2005). evaluation of PRSPs at the local level. MDGs, by setting specific Improving the capacity of govern- development targets to be achieved ance institutions poses a major chal- by 2015, are contributing to lenge of development in Africa. To 248 African Governance Report II strengthen governance, African gov- serious dearth of capacity. These ernments have to commit themselves include the legislature, executive, to meeting the capacity challenges. judiciary, civil service, political par- An ECA study argues “the major ties, civil society and the private sec- challenge . . . is to promote a cul- tor. As such those governance insti- ture of good governance necessary tutions are weak, poorly accountable for sound economic management, and prone to manipulations. While efficient service delivery and social a major finding of AGR I is that empowerment of the people. Gov- governance has improved in Africa, ernance capacity is needed to create its corollary is that there are several a capable democratic state, a virile challenges for which capacity is the civil society and a thriving private key. Sustaining and institutional- sector with a good culture of cor- izing the modest gains in Africa porate management” (ECA n.d.-b). will require substantial scaling up This same position is echoed in an of capacity development efforts of ACBF study that argues that capac- those institutions (ECA n.d.-b). ity building will need to: The performance Legislature of many African professionalize the voice of Entrusted with law making, alloca- legislatures is civil society and private sec- tion of resources and oversight func- hardly satisfactory. tor representative institu- tions, the legislature is the most tions, empower women and important organ of governance. But Elected members civil society organisations, the performance of many African often lack sufficient strengthen transparency and legislatures is hardly satisfactory. education and accountability, address politi- Elected members often lack suf- independence cal instability and provide ficient education, information and to perform their skills for conflict resolution independence to perform their con- constitutionally and management, enhance stitutionally mandated prerogatives. effectiveness and responsive- And parliaments lack adequate facil- mandated ness of the public sector as ities, administrative and technical prerogatives well as the delivery of pub- support and financial resources. lic services, reduce the bur- den of regulations, improve Weak caliber transparency, efficiency and Many legislators lack the education effectiveness of the regulatory to understand their role and dis- framework, encourage par- charge their responsibilities. The ticipation by all stakeholders Djibouti country study revealed in the development process, that weak academic qualifications strengthen the rule of law, and of elected officials resulted in their effectively address the issue of inability to initiate laws, analyze corruption (Sako and Ogiogio the budget and control the execu- 2002, 7). tive. Training programs that could upgrade their skills are often lack- One of the lessons learned from ing or offered in an ad hoc manner AGR I is that many of the govern- with little durable impact. In Burki- ance institutions in Africa have a na Faso many elected officials are Building Institutional Capacity for Governance 249 training for members of both the Box 8.4 Enhancing the effectiveness of the Namibian government and opposition. parliament On the other hand, Namibia pro- The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) trained mem- vides an encouraging example. bers of parliament and regional councils and parliamentary staff to strengthen Measures taken with the assist- their procedural, administrative, presentation and communication skills so they ance of the United States Agen- can make better use of committees, public hearings and fact-finding missions. cy for International Development It is hoped that the training will strengthen their ability to capture, analyze and (USAID) are enhancing the com- incorporate input from civil society into the process of policy formulation, legis- petence of the parliament, which is lative decision making and regional and local planning. To ensure sustainability regarded as one of the most profes- beyond its current support, USAID helped establish the Namibian Democracy sional in Africa. The USAID sup- Support Center, a cooperative partnership between selected government port enhances the skills of members institutions and civil society organisations to further strengthen the interac- of parliament and their staffs and tion between the government and civil society in a coordinated and planned deepens the parliament’s democratic manner. The Center’s objectives include outreach, planning, policy formulation culture. and analysis. The program emphasizes the capacity of elected representatives to understand the implications and impact of HIV/AIDS on development and Weak technical and administrative policymaking at national and regional levels and to analyze and provide inter- support ventions into legislative and policymaking process to reflect civic inputs. The absence of administrative and advisory support for legislators Source: Namibia country report 2007. undermines their ability to fulfil their responsibilities. In many Afri- can countries there is a short supply reported to be illiterate, and their of professional staff capable of col- contribution is considered minimal. lecting, analyzing and converting In Madagascar the legislators have data into meaningful information for minimum education and are unable legislators. Botswana lacks adequate to control the laws, finances and technical and administrative sup- procedures proposed by the govern- port. A similar shortfall is reported ment. In Togo the management of in South Africa. the assembly’s resources lack trans- parency, and the assembly lacks Poor facilities capacity to control the executive. Lack of facilities—buildings, offic- The country report identified areas es, residential quarters and com- that need improvement—capacity munication facilities— hampers to initiate laws, review policies and the effectiveness of the legislature programs, communicate with the in many African countries. In Dji- public and civil society, elaborate bouti deputies do not have sufficient and control the budget and improve offices, residences, communication transparency and accountability facilities such as telephone, fax, and in managing resources. The Sey- Internet, a documentation center or chelles report underscored the need interactive web site. Legislators in to improve and enhance legisla- Madagascar lack an adequate library, tive capabilities on issues of nation- computers, database, and access to al importance and recommended the Internet. The national assembly 250 African Governance Report II in Nigeria lacks fully equipped was considered inadequate, assistance office accommodations and a library. to parties has increased substantially In Rwanda neither the Chamber nor from R71 million to R156 million in the Senate have a resource center or 2006/07 and will reach R278 million research units staffed with profes- in 2009/10. sionals that can provide the neces- sary technical backup. Lack of independence Executive dominance significantly Facility constraint has been addressed reduces the legislature’s role in mak- in South Africa, where the national ing laws and exercising oversight. In legislature has provided members Togo the effectiveness of the parlia- with logistical support mechanisms ment is hampered by the national including computers, communication assembly’s lack of independence. In facilities and travel services. Zambia, where the capacity of par- liament to operate independently is Inadequate financial resources compromised by the ruling party’s The inability to be acquainted with insatiable appetite for luring opposi- Facing many current developments in legisla- tion members of parliament into its constraints, tures around the world and to have ranks, the legislature rarely initiates parliaments are regular contact with constituencies bills. Instead, it continues to be done generally ineffective through modern methods of com- by the executive. munication significantly reduces the in Africa. Executive capacity and performance of legisla- Facing many constraints, parlia- dominance tors. In Burkina Faso legislators do ments are generally ineffective significantly not have the financial resources to in Africa. Of the expert groups reduces the attend international meetings that responding to the question on legis- legislature’s role in would expose them to best practices. lative effectiveness, it is not surpris- making laws and As in Burkina, in Seychelles lack of ing that in only 8 of the 22 countries foreign exchange has made it dif- did more than 50% of the respond- exercising oversight ficult for legislators to attend meet- ents regard it as effective. The over- ings and workshops abroad. whelming majority did not consider the legislature to be effective. (See On the positive side, the National chapter 4, “Institutional Checks and Assembly in South Africa, in accord- Balances”.) ance with section 57 of the constitu- tion, grants financial assistance to Executive each represented party in an amount Because the executive is entrusted relative to the party’s strength, and with initiating and implementing senior party officers, such as the policy, any constraint of capacity of leader of the opposition, receive this branch could negatively impact additional support. The money can development. But executives in be used for support and research Africa seem to be faced with many staff, office administration and capi- problems: tal costs, enabling parties to establish and maintain a constituency out- • Lack of sufficient capacity in reach program. Because the support policy analysis. Building Institutional Capacity for Governance 251 • Lack of capacity to implement, of the civil service was found to be manage and monitor and evalu- below expectation and affected by ate development programs. a shortage of qualified personnel, politicization, demoralized work- • Personnel deficiency in mana- force and poor working conditions. gerial, financial and technical The public service delivery system skills. is bloated, inefficient and ineffective in responding to the needs of the • Unmotivated and demoral- people. ized staff in the case of some countries. In Djibouti weaknesses are found in human resources management, • Inability to attract and retain materials and logistics, internal con- capable staff. trols, statistical capacity and budget preparation. In Nigeria the civil • Weak statistical compilation service is not results-oriented. There Because the and analysis capacity. is a shortage of staff in economics, executive is finance, policy analysis and general entrusted with • Under-resourced and ineffective administration. The state lacks the local governments. capacity to provide security, protect initiating and individual rights and ensure ade- implementing • Lack of proper decentralization quate safeguard of property rights. policy, any policy and strategy resulting in And the police are inadequately constraint of poor service delivery. trained and equipped. capacity of this branch could Many of these problems were In the Republic of Congo a lack flagged in AGR I but continue to of control in managing human negatively impact constrain the executive. resources contributes to corruption development and fraud. In Madagascar there is a Weak human resources and lack of competition in recruitment, institutions unmotivated staff due to low pay, The Ghana country study revealed poor working conditions and lack that politics plays a large part in the of resources. The civil service does civil service and public officers were not have the procedures and strat- subjected to partisan pressure. Per- egy to attract competent personnel. sonnel often lack the requisite skills, The Namibian civil service remains training and resources to perform perpetually short of competence in their duties competently. Perform- technical, managerial and leadership ance is poor in several key areas and functions due to frequent turnover. services are nonexistent in remote locations. In Botswana inability to In Niger all levels of public admin- attract capable staff and the low istration suffer from shortage of level of education, skills and expe- human, material and financial rience of civil servants are major resources. The number of civil capacity constraints of the execu- servants fell by 10% from 2000 to tive. In Zambia the performance 2004. Shortage of resources in local 252 African Governance Report II governments has negatively impact- or facilities. The overwhelming ed service delivery, and weak infra- majority of the experts from the structure renders law enforcement surveyed countries did not consider agencies ineffective. In Tanzania local governments capable of deliv- weak institutional and organisation- ering services. al frameworks, unclear roles between the central government and local Inadequate materials and government authorities and weak infrastructure incentives for capacity development It is reported in Nigeria that most are constraints on the public service departments of statistics lack vital (ECA Tanzania country report). data processing equipment like com- puters and other information tech- Botswana lacks the capacity to gen- nology facilities. The Republic of erate evidence-based decision mak- Congo lacks government buildings, ing and monitor and evaluate policy office furniture and computers. In and program implementation. In Cape Verde lack of resources (mate- Sierra Leone the government has a rial and financial) to achieve the Cape limited capacity to generate qual- tasks assigned to the institutions is Verde has ity information for the analysis of among the major constraints of the undertaken development needs. There are few executive. several important think tanks in the country—a result of the devastating war, which led to Efforts to cope with constraints measures to considerable brain drain. The uni- Some countries have tried to address improve its public versities have limited research activi- their capacity constraints. For administration ties into which policy analysis could example, Namibia initiated meas- system feed. The capacity of the executive ures aimed at achieving outcome- in Togo is weakened by poor ration- focused public service, inculcating alization of the state structure, weak professional and ethical behavior decentralization, poor delegation of in civil servants and focusing on responsibility for economic manage- customer service. To achieve these ment and poor human resources. reforms, a performance management framework is being piloted in two In Ghana the capacity to plan, ini- ministries. tiate, implement and monitor local development remains weak. Local In Cape Verde, within the context governments lack the authority to of the programme to modernize mobilize resources, and the central the state, several important meas- government’s monitoring of local ures were undertaken to improve government and provision of tech- its public administration system. nical assistance are weak. In the These steps include the promul- Republic of Congo local govern- gation of a new law on the public ments lack the capacity and inde- administration system, a new plan pendence to discharge their respon- for career development and sal- sibilities. In Burkina Faso many ary increases for public servants, local government entities exist only use of information technology in in name and do not have personnel the public service and a new law on Building Institutional Capacity for Governance 253 acquisitions and markets aimed at to constrain the effectiveness of the improving transparency in the pro- judiciary. cedure for acquiring property and services (ECA Cape Verde country Lack of independence report 2007). An independent judiciary is a pre- requisite for a functioning democra- To improve the quality of the public cy and is central to good governance. service and promote better service Judicial independence is the founda- delivery in Kenya, a results-based tion for the rule of law. It means that management approach to pub- judges and magistrates are secure lic service reforms was introduced enough in their positions to dispense in 2004 under an initiative called justice without political interference the Results for Kenya Programme. and cannot be dismissed or intimi- The programme creates a citizen- dated for taking a position that focused, results-oriented public might have an adverse impact on the service to attain the country’s Vision executive. Without independence, Lack of 2030 goals. Its components include the judiciary is subject to the whims independence, promoting transformative leadership of political leaders. shortage for better results and accountability, building institutional capacity in the Human resource constraints of judges and public service, improving commu- In Sierra Leone magistrates, judg- magistrates, nication and education in the pub- es and other legal personnel are in inadequate funding, lic service and structuring partner- short supply. In Namibia a shortage poor remuneration ships with public sector stakeholders of magistrates, delays in appointing and limited (Nyamweya 2008). There have been legal aid counsel due to lack of funds facilities continue some positive results in service deliv- and extended investigation by the ery in Kenya. police constrain the effectiveness of to constrain the the judiciary. And the drain of expe- effectiveness of the Across project countries the poor rienced prosecutors does not help judiciary in Africa quality of police equipment impedes the situation. Financial, human and the capacity to fight crime and pro- material shortages are reported in tect lives and property. There is no Togo as a constraint on the judiciary. country in which half (50%) the Although judges’ competence and expert respondents felt that the the independence of the judiciary police are well equipped. Even in the are not in doubt in Cape Verde, it is countries with the best scores, like nevertheless believed that judicial Cape Verde, Botswana and Djibou- procedures are overly complex and ti, only 40% to 45% of the experts excessively bureaucratic, resulting considered the police to be well in delays in court decisions. Moreo- equipped. ver, the court registry operates poor- ly because the number of officials Judiciary is limited and they lack adequate Lack of independence, shortage qualifications, and disorganized of judges and magistrates, inad- files and limited use of information equate funding, poor remunera- technology result in poor perform- tion and limited facilities continue ance of the courts. In Botswana, 254 African Governance Report II where magistrates, judges and other Nigeria the judiciary is incapacitat- legal personnel are in short supply, ed by lack of working facilities due the judiciary fails to retain quali- to inadequate funding for modern fied and experienced staff, leading amenities that could facilitate speedy to delays in the disposal of cases. In delivery of justice. Almost all judges Madagascar lack of opportunities write notes in long hand except in for career improvement, poor train- Lagos State. Many lack access to ing, and poor working conditions, computers and air-conditioned offic- are among the serious constraints. In es. Power outage is common, and Seychelles a majority of the judges writing materials are in short sup- are foreigners with obvious implica- ply. Prisons are congested, largely by tions for sustainable national capac- detainees awaiting trial. ity in the management of the judicial system. In South Africa the large Financial constraints backlog of cases across the country In Zambia poor funding has led to is attributed to inadequate fund- poor salaries and unattractive work- ing, resources and capacity within ing conditions. Because the judiciary Non-state actors the justice system. In Niger the ratio does not have financial autonomy, can play an of judges to population is 1:70,000, it has no leverage over its budget, important role well below the international stand- let alone the rate and timing of dis- in consolidating ard of 1:7,000, and the number of bursements. In Sierra Leone the judges has been increasing at the judiciary also does not control its and strengthening rate of only 25 per year. own budget. Consequently, there democracy: are long delays in adjudication and mobilizing and Problems of infrastructure and facilities a large number of remand prisoners articulating social Except in the capital city, court pervade the justice system. demands, defending infrastructure, records manage- human rights and ment and the court system had col- In Ghana, however, some improve- lapsed in Sierra Leone as a result ments in the judiciary are reported spearheading of the civil war. In Congo lack of since AGR I, especially in building development transport, sufficient office furniture, up infrastructure, establishing com- typewriters and office facilities are mercial courts, automating some of reported to constrain the judiciary. the high courts and improving man- In 2000 visits by the South Afri- agement of the justice system. But can Human Rights Commission executive dominance still blurs pub- (SAHRC) to magistrate’s courts in lic confidence in some parts of the South Africa revealed poor security, system. South Africa also has start- lack of separate facilities for sensi- ed to address the resource shortages tive witnesses and children, non- that affect the performance of the functioning help desks and little judicial sector. essential equipment such as com- puters and recording machines.2 In Non-state actors 2004 a parliamentary ad hoc com- Non-state actors can play an impor- mittee on justice declared lack of tant role in consolidating and resources to be the most important strengthening democracy. They challenge faced by the courts. In play a vital role in mobilizing and Building Institutional Capacity for Governance 255 articulating social demands, defend- of CSOs lack a coherent mandate, ing human rights, spearheading functional boundaries, autonomy development activities and contribut- and managerial and programmatic ing to poverty alleviation. Although procedures. In Namibia CSOs lack the hostile political environment skills in organisational development, they had to contend with for years management, networking, lobbying, has improved, many non-state actors advocacy and research, monitoring in Africa lack skills, experience, and evaluation, and project identi- organisational capabilities, financial fication and preparation. They are resources and infrastructure. Many losing skilled managerial and profes- civil society organisations (CSOs) are sional staff to the public and private weak, short of resources and depend- sectors due to low pay. ent on foreign support. In Nigeria civil society is weak in Non-state actors require capac- organisation and highly susceptible ity to contribute to the formulation to political manoeuvring, although Although and implementation of development it is active and engaged. There are the hostile programs. In the 22 countries where about 175 prominent CSOs in the political expert opinion was solicited on how country, but few have solid organisa- effectively CSOs contribute to pro- tional and managerial skills. CSOs environment they moting accountability and trans- play a limited role and make limited had to contend parency, only in 6 countries—Mali impact on policy formulation and with for years has (70%), Ghana (64%), Zambia (59%), implementation because few have a improved, many Senegal (58%), Sierra Leone (52%) capacity for research or are compu- non-state actors and Botswana (50%)—did a majori- ter literate. In Tanzania, despite the in Africa lack ty respond positively. In the 16 other contribution of CSOs toward build- countries the responses were below ing a capable state, it is reported that skills, experience 50% and as low as 16.5% in Egypt. even though many of the donor- and financial supported projects for CSOs have resources Civil society organisations built-in capacity development com- Human resource and other organisa- ponents, they reflect donor interest tional constraints. In Botswana lack for short-term results rather than the of adequate skills, experience, crea- development of sustainable organisa- tivity and funding are among the tions. Most small, indigenous CSOs major constraints faced by CSOs. do not have the capability to engage In Cape Verde civil society organi- qualified administrative and finan- sations suffer from poor manage- cial managers to run their activities ment and lack of material resourc- (ECA 2007b). es. Improvement of management capacity requires permanent train- Financial and other constraints. Lim- ing schemes for CSO leaders. In ited financial means and weak Madagascar the CSOs suffer from human resources are among the insufficient organisational and lead- major constraints faced by CSOs ership skills. In Sierra Leone civil in Burkina Faso, Cape Verde and society is weak in technical, strategic Madagascar. In South Africa fragile and advocacy skills. The majority funding has led to weakened CSOs, 256 African Governance Report II which have lost many of their com- parties are deficient in institutional petent staff to the government. In capacity. Many of them have existed Tanzania CSOs are not financially merely for the purpose of contesting self-sufficient and depend heavily on the 1996, 2003 and 2007 elections. donors. The capacity of civil soci- Failing to win seats in parliament, ety in Kenya to engage the govern- they ceased to exist. ment has been undermined over the last four years by internal weakness, Financial and infrastructure con- problems of ethnicity and capacity straints. Limited infrastructure and migration into government and for- inadequate funding pose difficul- mal politics and by resource shortag- ties for the effectiveness of political es due to dependence on donors who parties. In Zambia they suffer from prefer basket funding geared mostly inadequate and uncertain funding, toward supporting state institutions making it difficult to recruit full- like the electoral commission during time staff and purchase vehicles, election periods rather than support- office equipment, communication ing CSOs. services and Internet connections. Political parties Similar shortages face parties in in Africa have Political parties Botswana and Djibouti. little capability Political parties in Africa have little to articulate issues, capability to articulate issues, engage In South Africa funding for political in debate, promote their principles parties is based on the size of a party. engage in debate, and vision of society or defend the As a result, smaller and newer par- promote their interests and rights of their sup- ties face capacity shortages, hamper- principles and porters. Most are not professionally ing their ability to compete. Mada- vision of society organized and do not have functional gascar also reported a lack of ade- or defend the democratic structures. Many lack quate finances and transparency of interests and rights competent and committed leader- operation in parties. And in Senegal ship. They suffer from severe fund- some parties do not even have decent of their supporters ing problems and are exposed to har- headquarters; only the ruling party assment and intimidation by incum- and a few opposition parties can bent governments (ECA 2008). afford accommodations. The system of financing political parties based Human resource and other institution- on votes obtained has reduced chanc- al constraints. In Botswana political es that smaller parties can survive. parties suffer from severe organi- sational problems. In Zambia weak Although political parties are mush- internal leadership and management rooming in Africa, they mostly lack structures characterize most of the capacity and institutionalised pro- parties. In Djibouti political parties cedures, processes and organisa- face problems of human resourc- tion. Without capable and efficient es. Likewise, in Madagascar, the political parties that can promote political parties’ internal capacity in informed debates, create alternative organisational matters is weak and visions for society and rekindle hope suffers from a shortage of trained in the democratic agenda, Africa’s staff. In Sierra Leone political democratisation process will falter. Building Institutional Capacity for Governance 257 Media in the economies of many African The media have grown in impor- countries. In some countries the ide- tance since the opening of politi- ological rationale was socialism. But cal space and democratisation in after years of being marginalized the the 1980s and 1990s, promoting private sector is now acknowledged accountability and transparency. as the engine of economic growth. (See chapters 1 and 4.) But con- The past decade has witnessed a straints on the media continue. They plethora of policies aimed at creating suffer from deficiencies in skills, a more conducive environment for trained manpower in investigative the private sector, and many coun- journalism and quality reporting. tries have taken measures to enhance the sector’s capacity to compete in In Nigeria, though the quality global markets. Governments have of journalism is considered high, also passed laws to attract investors many media houses still lack equip- and have improved the policy and ment and facilities. The media are regulatory environment. After years not adequately trained for handling of being sensitive and topical issues such as Sustained economic growth and marginalized violent conflicts and gender issues, development in Africa requires an and professionals are poorly paid. efficient and dynamic private sec- the private sector is Cape Verde reports the need to tor. One report observed: “For the now acknowledged improve the training of journalists in sector to play its role as an engine of as the engine of order to enhance their independent growth, it needs to be encouraged by economic growth performance. a conducive policy environment, the availability of functional and effi- In Kenya, however, there has been cient infrastructure, effective public a substantial growth of the media sector institutions, and security of with the licensing of private radio investment. African countries need and television. The media have an enabling environment for both helped to promote transparency and domestic and foreign private invest- accountability by exposing corrup- ment to flourish. The private sec- tion and government scandals. They tor needs improved management, continue to indirectly influence poli- better information on markets and cies and programs while highlight- investments, and a work force with ing conflict. Consequently, the rul- the requisite skills and motivation. ing elites have attacked the media by Supportive public policies and the using criminal elements and formal efficient supply of infrastructure and security structures to harass journal- services, as well as specific interven- ists, including attempts to gag them tions to enhance private-sector insti- under the 2007 Media Bill. tutions are direly needed” (Sako and Ogiogio 2002). Private sector In the 1970s there was a strong Despite today’s relatively encourag- belief that the public sector was the ing environment for the private sec- engine of growth, and the private tor, more needs to be done if the pri- sector did not have a significant role vate sector is to play its expected role 258 African Governance Report II as an engine of growth. The pri- and artisans; planning and manage- vate sector in many of the countries ment capacity in the health care and is still fragile, lacking the capacity educational systems and education in to compete in the global market. mathematics and science. In Botswana undeveloped regula- tory and institutional frameworks Knowledge capacity for hamper growth and expansion of governance the private sector. In Seychelles the In many African countries poor gov- private sector needs better training ernance, a deteriorating economic in strategic fields. Capacity building situation—especially in the 1980s in all sectors of the economy remains and 1990s—and poor social wel- essential for long-term sustainable fare have eroded the knowledge base economic growth and social devel- and human capacity. First, research opment. In Cape Verde administra- and educational institutions have tive barriers, excessive bureaucracies, witnessed a downturn in the qual- industrial legislation and high taxes ity of education and commitment to constrain the private sector. In Sierra science. Budgets for education have In many African Leone the private sector operates in dwindled, and funding for research countries poor a difficult environment in two key has virtually dried up. governance, respects: shortage of human resourc- a deteriorating es and insufficient public utilities. Second, emigration and brain drain For the majority of the citizens the have intensified, affecting govern- economic situation informal sector is a means of their ance capacity, especially in the deliv- and poor social livelihood, but it has not been a ben- ery of social services. It is estimated welfare have eroded eficiary of reform initiatives by the that since 1990, 20,000 skilled pro- the knowledge base government. fessionals have left Africa each year. and human capacity Yet Africa spends about US$4 bil- In South Africa, on the other hand, lion per year (representing 35% of the informal sector, which consti- official development aid to Africa) tutes an important part of South to employ about 100,000 Western Africa’s economy, benefits from pro- experts to perform functions gener- grams and agencies to support peo- ally referred to as technical assist- ple with money, business skills and ance (ECA n.d.-a). technology to run their businesses. As the formal private sector expand- The costs and consequences of Afri- ed into the financial and service ca’s brain drain are enormous. For a sectors, it experienced a shortage of continent with a dearth of financial skilled labor. As a result, the gov- resources, the huge costs of train- ernment launched the Joint Initia- ing skilled professionals are lost to tive for Priority Skills Acquisition the countries. In Kenya, for exam- to address the skills requirements of ple, it costs about US$40,000 to the country’s expanding economy train a doctor and US$10,000 to in several areas: planning and engi- US$15,000 to educate a univer- neering of water, transport and other sity student for four years, exclud- network areas; town and regional ing tuition fees where such exists. planning skills; training of engineers The World Health Organization Building Institutional Capacity for Governance 259 estimates that delivery of basic • Improvements in social wel- health services requires 20 physi- fare and governance, which will cians per 100,000 people. While discourage human capital flight Western countries boast of about from the continent. 222 physicians per 100,000 people, most African countries fall far short Given the diversity of African states of the minimum standard (ECA and their differing levels of develop- n.d.-a). And the few physicians that ment and varying degrees of experi- Africa has are attracted to the West ences in democratic governance, a for better salaries, living conditions “one size fits all” approach to capac- and professional fulfillment. ity building is not appropriate. All countries share many capacity gaps, The knowledge shortfall on govern- but the degree of complexity var- ance in Africa includes the skills ies. The solutions will have to be to manage public institutions and appropriate to the historical, cultural businesses and to facilitate basic and behavioural differences of each If the legislature and applied research and innovative country. is to assume its practices for better service delivery. constitutionally A new incentive regime for better Enhancing the capacity of knowledge development in Africa parliament assigned role must target the following: The legislature, despite the con- and become a stitutional prominence it enjoys, is vibrant institution, • Better funding of research and still weak in initiating legislation its capacity educational institutions from and oversight. In many countries its constraints have to the primary to tertiary levels. effectiveness continues to be erod- be addressed as a ed by the dominance of the execu- • A merit system in education and tive. If the legislature is to assume matter of priority research based on performance its constitutionally assigned role and output. and become a vibrant institution, its capacity constraints have to be • Continuous training pro- addressed as a matter of priority. grammes for staff and officials in public institutions. Strengthening skills of standing committee members • Better remuneration for civil Given that most of the technical servants, public-sector workers work of a parliament is handled at the and research and education staff committee level, targeting the com- in order to retain human capac- mittee members for more training ity in Africa. makes sense. Training programmes should focus on issues such as: • A diaspora capacity programme that encourages donors and • Reviewing legislation. international development partners to engage and use the • Reviewing and approving the human capital of the African budget and expenditures of the diaspora for technical assistance. government. 260 African Governance Report II • Scrutinizing the government’s new parliamentarians to familiarize activities, policies and pro- them with the general principles of grams, and assessing whether parliamentary operation. they meet the intended objec- tives of legislation. Enhancing the capacity of the executive • Conducting investigations on Despite the key role it is expected special issues and reviewing to play in development, the execu- appointments. tive seems to be dogged with many problems. Many of the issues flagged Strengthening technical and in AGR I continue. Although the professional support constraints discussed earlier may be It is equally important to strengthen observed in many countries, their the technical support of the parlia- magnitude and intensity vary. Hence ment. There should be a research it is necessary to domesticate solu- wing to provide elected officials tions to address the respective country with the necessary briefs and elabo- problems. But there are some inter- Despite the ration of issues under consideration ventions that apply to all countries: key role it is so they can make constructive inputs expected to play to legislation. The research wing • Allocate sufficient resources to in development, the should be endowed with good docu- enhance skills in policy analy- mentation resources, a well-stocked sis, in formulating, managing executive seems library and an Internet connection. and developing programs and in to be dogged with monitoring and evaluation. many problems. Strengthening relationships with many of the constituencies • Strengthen the statistical office issues flagged in An important role for legislators so it can generate reliable data AGR I continue is maintaining a close relationship for informed decision making. with their constituencies and gener- ating consideration at the parliamen- • Develop think tanks to broaden tary level of issues that specifically the sources of vital and credible affect the people they represent. To information for policy debates. maintain a close relationship with their constituency, the legislators • Endow local governments with need resources and logistics. Due the resources to improve their to a lack of funding, in many coun- service delivery to the public. tries this function is given only lip Particularly, provide direct cen- service. tral government funding, then allow local governments the Familiarizing newly elected members flexibility to use it to enhance with the working of parliament their capacity for financial Parliaments are elected periodical- and fiscal planning and man- ly. Turnover makes a training pro- agement, policy and program gramme for new members quite a design, implementation, moni- challenge. But regardless of cost it toring and evaluation and is important to organize training for improved accountability. Building Institutional Capacity for Governance 261 • Enhance the capacity of local management and improve access governments to respond to the to information. needs of the community, espe- cially in developing a partici- • Provide continuous training at patory planning and budgetary all levels to enhance the skills of process that involves communi- the judicial staff. ties and other stakeholders in setting priorities and providing • Provide convenient offices, oversight. court rooms, modern informa- tion-recording and retrieval sys- • Improve the working condi- tems and other facilities. tions and remuneration of civil servants to boost morale and Enhancing the capacity of productivity. non-state actors Several measures can be taken to • Harness information and com- boost the effectiveness of non-state munication technology to actors: improve efficiency of service delivery. • In consultation with civil society organisations, political parties, • Build capacity in the executive community-based organisations, to manage the changing role of the private sector and the media, the public sector in today’s world devise policies and strategies to of globalization, the market address their limitations in edu- economy, multiparty democracy cation, skills, experience, organ- and information revolution. isational ability and financing. Non-state actors need skills that Enhancing the capacity of the will enable them to be effective judiciary in policy formulation and imple- Several measures are recommended to mentation, advocacy, negotiation overcome constraints on the judiciary: and lobbying. • Bolster the independence of • Enhance CSOs’ skills to par- the judiciary through legal and ticipate in, and monitor, public administrative reforms. service delivery. • Provide the resources to hire • Consider funding political par- more judicial and support staff. ties to ensure that small parties do not get discouraged due to • Improve the remuneration sys- financial shortage. For democ- tem so qualified people can be racy to thrive, the existence of attracted and retained. a vibrant multiparty system is necessary. • Implement a case management system and harness informa- • Make Africa competitive. But tion technology to expedite case today many African businesses 262 African Governance Report II are far from competitive. It is that existing capacity is effectively therefore important to enhance utilized and that an environment the capacity of the private sec- that encourages capacity retention is tor to improve its efficiency and put in place. competitiveness. But capacity building by itself is • Attract foreign direct invest- not enough. Capacity has to be ment. Although there have been developed, effectively utilized and encouraging moves to improve retained if it is to lead to appreciable the business environment, much changes in African countries. An more has to be done. ACBF study observed: • Improve the private sector’s The availability and effec- competency for effective dia- tive utilization of the requi- logue with other stakeholders site capacity will determine in development, especially the Africa’s ability to meet these public sector and civil society, challenges in the 21st century. Africa entered in order to influence the policy What this implies, therefore, the twenty- agenda. is that sustained structural first century transformation in Africa in saddled with • Improve journalists’ skills the next two decades requires through support for appropriate a significant leap in the quan- many challenges. training. tum of support and commit- To address these ment to capacity building as challenges, Conclusion well as reforms for effective the continent Africa entered the twenty-first cen- utilization of such capacity must tackle its tury saddled with many challenges. (Sako and Ogiogio 2002, 14). capacity deficits To address these challenges, the continent must tackle its capac- The lessons identified in a study ity deficits. Africa’s brain drain was conducted in the early 1990s by not solely triggered by poor eco- ECA on capacity development can nomic conditions. It was also caused still serve as inspiration as Africa by political violence, repression of continues to tackle its capacity- human rights and the lack of a pro- building challenges: ductive professional and technologi- cal environment (Sako and Ogiogio • Capacity building requires a 2002). One way to abate the brain comprehensive approach that drain is to address its root causes. addresses needs in all critical sectors. Despite a hostile environment, some skilled professionals opted to stick • Sound and stable economic it out, but the lack of proper capac- policies are important for capac- ity often leads to frustration, forc- ity building. ing people to withdraw and remain inactive in spite of the critical skills • National ownership of capac- they possess. It is thus important ity building and responsibility Building Institutional Capacity for Governance 263 for its utilization is a necessary • National efforts in capacity condition. building should be complement- ed by regional and sub-regional • While African governments activities. should be in the driving seat of capacity-building efforts, the • Creating and maintaining a cost is so huge that they would conducive economic and politi- not be able to achieve their cal environment is critical for objective without substantial capacity building. external assistance. Mobilizing the resources from both domes- • All actors involved in capacity tic savings and external sources building must agree on a mech- is needed to finance capacity anism for coordinating and har- building and utilization. But monizing their initiatives in a technical assistance for capacity manner that can effectively push building should complement— forward the capacity-building There are great not compete with or substi- agenda (ECA 2006). challenges tute for—indigenous expertise. confronting This concern was expressed in There are great challenges con- a recent ECA document which fronting Africa and its international Africa. The first argues that “[w]hile foreign development partners in promot- step in tackling assistance is highly necessary ing capacity development on the those challenges and desirable, African states continent. The first step in tack- has to come from need to take the initiative, lead ling those challenges has to come Africa itself and mobilize strong internal from Africa itself—harnessing its efforts for capacity develop- existing knowledge base, skills and ment. In other words, there are diaspora human capital and improv- several capacity issues that can ing the economic and social infra- be addressed with good plan- structure necessary for institutional ning and strategy by African and societal capacity development. countries. Even where external While Africa tackles the problem of support is required, such must brain drain, it should also take on be well-defined and focused in the more serious challenge of brain order to ensure the effectiveness retention, so people do not emi- of such intervention” (ECA grate and there is a conducive envi- n.d.-a, 6). ronment for them to contribute to the development of their respective • An action plan for capacity countries. building, with clear measures for monitoring and evaluating Notes success, is needed. 1. According to Mohiddin, the defin- ing characteristics of a capable state • It is important to forge effective are constitutionalism, democracy, partnerships in capacity build- intelligence, competence, legiti- ing involving the public and pri- macy, flexibility and effectiveness. vate sectors at the national level. A capable state is well informed 264 African Governance Report II and knowledgeable, legitimate and Development: Definitions, Issues and firmly accommodated in society. Implications for Planning, Monitor- It is capable of changing, adapt- ing and Evaluation.” Universalia ing and adopting itself to emerging Occasional Paper No. 35. challenges. See Mohiddin 2007. Mohiddin, Ahmed. 2007. “Reinforcing 2. See ECA South African National capacity towards building the capable Country Report, 2007, Chapter 9, state in Africa.” Concept paper for p. 6). AGF VII. Mutahaba, Gelasi. 2002. “International References and African perspectives on public ECA (Economic Commission for Afri- sector reform: Lessons for Rwanda.” ca). 2005. African Governance Report Paper presented in the Senior Policy 2005.Addis Ababa. Workshop for Secretary-Generals of ———. 2006. “Capacity Building in the Government of Rwanda, Kigali, Africa: Effective States and Engaged October 2002. Societies.” Report for joint workshop Nyamweya, Joyce. 2008. “Public Service sponsored by African Development Reforms in Kenya.” Presentation at Bank, UNECA, and the World Bank, ECA, February 2008. Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, February Sako, Soumana, and Genevesi Ogiogio. 24–25, 2006. 2002. “Africa: Major Development ———. 2007a. Namibia country report. Challenges & their Capacity Build- Addis Ababa. ing Dimensions.” ACBF Occasional ———. 2007b. Tanzania country report. paper No.1. Addis Ababa. UNESCO (United Nations Educational, ———. 2007c. Togo country report. Scientific and Cultural Organization) Addis Ababa. and IICBA (International Institute ———. 2008. Political Parties and Public for Capacity Building in Africa). Policies in Africa. ECA: Addis Ababa. 2006. “Capacity Building Frame- ———. n.d.-a. “Brain Drain in Africa: work.” Addis Ababa: IICBA, 2006. Facts and Figures.” Addis Ababa. University of Namibia. 2007. Multidis- ———. n.d.-b. “Capacity Development ciplinary Research Center, National in Africa: Some Lessons from the Governance Report., 2007. African Governance Report.” Unpub- World Bank. 2005. Capacity Building in lished paper. Addis Ababa. Africa—An OED Evaluation of World Englebert, Pierre. 2005. “Notes on gov- Bank Support. Washington, D.C.: ernance and capacity building.” Paper World Bank Operations Evaluation for conference, “Aid, Governance and Department. Development in Africa,” Northwest- ———. n.d. “Towards a more strategic ern University, May 12–14, 2005. approach to capacity building in Lusthaus, Charles, Marie-Helene Adrien Africa.” sitesources.worldbank.org/ and Mark Perstinger. 1999. “Capacity INTCDRC/Resource/Africa.doc. Building Institutional Capacity for Governance 265
"Building Institutional Capacity for Governance"