Parliament Commissions Study Into Gov't Evaluation Capacity

2214 Views Soroti, Uganda

In short
The parliament of Uganda has commissioned a study to establish government’s capacity to monitor and evaluate its projects. The study targets 16 districts in the country.

The parliament of Uganda has commissioned a study to establish government’s capacity to monitor and evaluate its projects.
 
The study targets 16 districts in the country.
 
Jonathan Enamu, the Senior Research Officer of Parliament, told a team of elected leaders and civil servants in Soroti municipality that the study would focus on the evaluation and monitoring systems, and analysis mechanism used by the local governments.
 
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Enamu explained that the findings would help inform the government on what exactly is the strength of its capacity to evaluate projects. Currently, government has no clue on what standard or system exists in its structures to carry out evaluation meaning that it cannot effectively assess whether some of its planned projects have met its objectives.
 
During the meeting between the parliament research team and the Soroti local government officials, it emerged that the local government has a thin, rigid and constrained personnel to carry out evaluation. Meanwhile, the elected leaders expressed ignorance at how exactly to carry out evaluation.
 
John Odele, the Soroti Municipality Planner, said the department has only two staff comprising the Planner and the Statistician to carry out monitoring and evaluation. He added that for a long time now, Local Government Information and Communication (LOGIC) system, a computer software which they have been using for carrying out evaluation, has broken down leaving them with no option to do the work. He said that the department lacks transport and adequate funding to carry out monitoring and evaluation.
 
Richard Ecaat, the LC4 representative for Nakatunya Ward in Soroti municipality, said there was need for training of the entire elected leaders on how to carry out evaluation. He explained that the problem is made worse by the fact that even the law such as the Local Government Act only mentions monitoring as the duty of the elected leaders leaving out evaluation.
 
Richard Okello, the municipality clerk said there is need to include evaluation among the topics usually covered during orientation of the elected leaders.
 
However, Lucy Anoo Santina, the Municipal Education Officer, insisted that the council has been carrying out evaluation but unconsciously. She therefore hailed the call for training of the local leaders on how to conduct both monitoring and evaluation of government projects in order to ensure that public funds are put to good use.
 
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Parliament has a role to ensure transparency and accountability in the application of public funds as well as monitor the implementation of Government programs and projects.