Social Accountability in Urban Area
Reflection workshop with stakeholders on the Implementation of Social Accountability Framework phase II organized by Advocacy and Policy Institute (API) at Khan Sen Sok’s Meeting Hall. © API
“The pilot of ISAF II in Khan Sen Sok is a role model for other Khans in Phnom Penh to promote citizen’s participation to improve public service quality. Thus, the budget of Khan must be open for public interests and the Khan Councils must be aware of the budget and expenditure,” said Mr. Chet Kimchong, representative of the National Committee for Sub-National Democratic Development (NCDD), during a reflection workshop on social accountability implementation in October at Khan Sen Sok’s meeting hall.
The workshop was organized by Oxfam’s new partner, Advocacy and Policy Institute (API) with participation from NCDD, health centers, primary schools, Khan/Sangkat administration and citizen to share their lesson learnt including achievement, challenges and recommendation on how to improve the implementation of social accountability.
key issues found during the meeting included but not limited to: people have limited understanding on ISAF, thus their participation was also limited; some people did not dare to come and attend the community score card session directly; difficulties in identifying most disadvantaged groups (old age people, ID poor families, LGBTQI) within target areas; CAF (Community Assessment Facilitator) members were busy with their full time study schedule, thus their fully participation within the project activity was not met.
In February 2019, Oxfam started the new partnership with API to implement ISAF II—a four-year program starting from 2019-2023 aiming to continue empowering citizen and local communities particularly women, youth and indigenous people by exercising their rights to strengthen the allocation and use of budget and delivery of local public services.
The work in urban area is an opportunity for Phnom Penh city-dwellers to provide systematic feedback to local government and service providers because the current local planning process in capital city of Phnom Penh does not require direct citizen participation, by contrast to the required 60% of household participation of subnational planning in rural area.
Sok Chan Chhorvy, Program Manager of this project, said: “This project allows the community to provide their feedback on the performance of sub-national administration including budget monitoring to improve the service and promote transparency and accountability.”