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LESSONS FROM THE IMPLEMENTATION OF THE APRM NATIONAL PROGRAMMES OF ACTION Afeikhena Jerome Governance Assessment for Accountable Politics Windhoek, Namibia Apr 20, 2013

2 to 5 November 2009


Overview of the APRM Africa entered the new millennium with optimism and a commonly derived and broadly supported roadmap of how to overcome the development challenges of the last decades that were exacerbated by a range of factors including conflict, institutional decay, leadership and managerial deficit, endemic corruption and economic mismanagement. Overview

The Africa’s agenda for renewal and overcoming these development deficits includes advancing the basic values of democratization and good governance, which together constitute the key requirements for sustainable development. The APRM which is turning out to be the most innovative aspect of NEPAD is a self-monitoring instrument voluntarily agreed to by member states of the African Union.


Overview of the APRM


Its primary purpose is: “To foster the adoption of policies, standards and practices that lead to political stability, high economic growth, sustainable development and accelerated sub-regional and continental economic integration through sharing of experiences and reinforcement of successful and best practice, including identifying deficiencies and assessing the needs of capacity building.� It is unprecedented in scope and mandate, even compared to the OECD that invented modern Peer Review. It covers four

broad areas, namely; Democracy and Political Governance; Economic Governance and Management; Corporate Governance; and Socio-Economic Development.


APRM Principles Overview

National ownership and leadership by the participating country are essential factors underpinning the APRM process. It is designed to be open and participatory. The core guiding principles are transparency, accountability, technical competence, credibility and it should be free from manipulation. The APRM is not a score-card exercise, meant to exclude or punish countries. There is no conditionality attached to the mechanism.


African Countries Participating in NEPAD and the APRM APR Forum


Burkina Faso

Tunisia Libya Botswana

Algeria Angola Republic of Cameroon Congo Egypt Ethiopia Ghana Gabon Kenya

Mali Mauritius Nigeria

Mozambique Rwanda Sao Tome &Principe Senegal South Africa

Benin Djibouti Lesotho Malawi Sierra Leone Sudan Tanzania Uganda Zambia


The APR Processes 

Stage One comprises: the establishment of the national focal point; sending out of the questionnaire by the APR Secretariat; the development of the country’s self assessment based on the questionnaire and preliminary Programme of Action; and the submission of these to the APR Secretariat. At this stage the Secretariat also prepares a Background Paper on the Country for comparison with the self assessment.

Stage Two the country review team visits the country to undertake wide consultations with stakeholders.

Stage Three is the drafting of the report by the country review team.

Stage Four is the submission of the Country Review Team’s report to the APR Secretariat and the APR Panel and Review by the Forum

Stage Five which is the final stage of the APR process involves making public the country’s report and related actions.


Stages of the APRM Stage 1

Stage 2

Stage 3

Stage 4 Stage 5

6 to 9 Mths

2. APR Secretariat Develops a background paper on country

Country Support Mission

1. APR Secretariat sends a questionnaire to be country to be reviewed

Country establishes APR Focal Point

2C3.Country submits to the Secretariat the responses to the questionnaire and its PoA

3. APR Secretariat develops an Issues Paper based on the background paper, the responses to the Questionnaire & the draft PoA. The issues paper may identify issues that require more in-depth analysis through Technical Assessments (TA)

If issues for TA: 2C1. In response, the Country undertakes the self-assessment on the basis of the Questionnaire

= Country level processes

2C2. Country formulates a draft Programme-ofAction (POA)

If no issues for TA:

4. APR Secretariat arranges for Partner Institutions to conduct Technical Assessments on specific issues identified in Issues Paper. Reports are submitted to the APR Secretariat and the country under review

5. The APR Secretariat updates Issues Paper taking into account the findings of the Technical Assessments

5C. Country submits (if necessary) an update of its draft PoA







Country submits final PoA adjusted on basis of CRV and draft Country Report


Operational Structure of the APRM 

The overall responsibility of the APRM is vested in the Committee of Participating Heads of State and Government of the Member States of the APRM (APRM Forum]. A Panel of Eminent Persons [APRM Panel] appointed by the Heads of States oversees the conduct of the APRM process and ensures its integrity. The APR Secretariat provides the secretarial, technical, coordinating and administrative support services for the APRM.


Structures of the APRM APR Forum

National APRM Focal Point

National APRM Commission

APR Panel TRIs

APR Secretariat Strategic Partner Institutions

Continental Level

National APRM Secretariat Country Level


Structures to manage the process at country level A National Commission with broad stakeholder representation should ideally be in place to interact with the support mission team. A trend seems to emerge that includes a Focal Point and Governing Council supported by a Secretariat as well as Technical Research Institutes. While uniformity may not be easy to achieve based on the contexts of countries, national ownership and broad-based stakeholder representation are key features required for these institutions.


APRM Master Questionnaire Democracy and Good Political Governance (9 Objectives)

Economic Governance and Management (5 Objectives)

Corporate Governance (5 Objectives)

Socio-Economic Governance (6 Objectives)

30 International instruments and Standards/ 16 Regional instruments and Standards

15 Standards and codes

9 Standards and codes

10 Standards and codes

1. Prevent and reduce intra- and inter-country conflicts.

1. Promote macroeconomic policies that support sustainable development

1. Promote an enabling environment and effective regulatory framework for economic activities

1. Promote self-reliance in development and build capacity for self-sustaining development

2. Constitutional democracy, including periodic political competition and opportunity for choice, the rule of law, a Bill of Rights and supremacy of the Constitution.

2. Implement sound, transparent and predictable government economic policies

2. Ensure that corporations act as good corporate citizens with regards to human rights, social responsibility and environmental sustainability

2. Accelerate socio-economic development to achieve sustainable development and poverty eradication

3. Promotion and protection of economic, social and cultural rights, civil and political rights as enshrined in African and international human rights instruments

3. Promote sound public finance management

3. Promote adoption of codes of good business ethics in achieving the objectives of the corporation

3. Strengthen policies, delivery mechanisms and outcomes in key social areas including education and combating HIV/AIDS and other communicable diseases

4. Uphold the separation of powers, including the protection of the independence of the judiciary and of an effective parliament

4. Fight corruption and money laundering

4. Ensure that corporations treat all their stakeholders (Shareholders, employees, communities, suppliers and customers) in a fair and just manner

4. Ensuring affordable access to water, sanitation, energy, finance (including microfinance), markets, ICT, shelter and land to all citizens, especially the rural poor

5. Ensure accountable, efficient and effective public office holders and civil servants

5. Accelerate regional integration by participating in the harmonization of monetary, trade and investment policies

5. Provide for accountability of corporations, directors and officers

5. Progress towards gender equality in all critical areas of concern, including equal access to education for girls at all 11 levels

APRM Master Questionnaire Democracy and Good Political Governance

6. Fighting corruption in the political sphere

Economic Governance and Management

Corporate Governance

Socio-Economic Governance

6. Encourage broad-based participation in development by all stakeholders at all levels

7. Promotion and protection of the rights of women

8. Promotion and protection of the rights of children and young persons

9. Promotion and protection of the rights of vulnerable groups including internally displaced persons and refugees


Status of Implementation of the APRM thus Far Cape Verde’s accession in June 2009 brings to 30 the total number of AU member countries that have so far acceded. Mauritania was suspension on 25 October 2008 for the unconstitutional change of government following the 6 August 2008 coup that ousted its democratically elected President Green – Reviewed Countries Orange –Other Participating Member Countries Grey – Non-Participating Countries Red- Suspended Countries

This represents about 76 per cent of the African population. We look forward to the 23 other African countries joining the fold.


APRM Member Countries by Region Region


Central Africa (5)

Cameroon, Gabon, Republic of Congo, Rwanda and SĂŁo TomĂŠ and Principe

East Africa (5)

Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda

North Africa (3)

Algeria, Egypt, Sudan

Southern Africa (7)

Angola, Lesotho, South Africa, Zambia

West Africa (9)10

Benin, Burkina Faso, Ghana, Mauritania, Mali, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Togo and Cape Verde






So far, 17 out of the 30 member countries have launched the process.

Twelve countries have been peer reviewed by the APR Forum. (Ghana, Rwanda, Kenya, South Africa, Algeria, Benin, Uganda, Nigeria and Burkina Faso, Mali and Mozambique and Lesotho)

Mauritius and Ethiopia has just completed their Country Review Missions. Kenya II is scheduled for November 2009. Tanzania has submitted its CSAR and NPOA to the Secretariat. Zambia is also slated on the Work Plan for Peer Review this year.


APRM Country Review Missions


APRM Country Review Missions


Examples from the Pioneer Countries- Ghana 6 Best Practices including: An oasis of peace and tranquility in a sub-region perpetually in turmoil. Unique processes for fostering democracy such as the Annual Governance Forum and the People’s Assembly; Main Challenges Low representation of women in politics; corruption; decentralisation; and chieftaincy disputes which have been quite rife in recent year. Others are – bloated cabinet - 88 ministers in all; weak internal capacity for economic policy making; weak oversight by Parliament; and heavy dependence on external aid. 18

Rwanda Review Process Best Practices including: The highest proportion of Women in Parliament (49%) in the in the world; efforts in providing social services especially free education; and using ICT strategy to transform the country into a service-based economy. Main Challenges Aid dependence - about 90% of the capital expenditure funded externally; Relations with its neighbours in the Great Lakes region which has been a source of conflict; and the issue of legitimacy and trust in the Gacaca.


Kenya Review Process Overview Progress So Far Lessons Learnt Challenges

9 Best Practices including: Kenya’s role in pacifying her neighbours; considerable degree of freedom in exercising political and civil rights; promotion of decentralisation; reduction in the prevalence rate of HIV/AIDS; and firing of 29 judges to clean up the Judiciary. Main Challenges Delay in adopting a new constitution to replace the colonial era charter; inability to redress the colonial legacies; ethnicity; endemic corruption; weak parliamentary oversight; poor representation of women in key positions; and high incidence of poverty.


South Africa Review Process Overview Progress So Far Lessons Learnt Challenges

In addition to some remarkable feats by South Africans, the report identified 18 Best Practices including: Taking the parliament to the people; the budget formulation process, self-reliance in funding development; the JSE and triple bottom reporting; and gender empowerment (Women constitute about 45 % of Parliament). Main Challenges Violent crime, violence against women and children; capacity constraint and poor service delivery; Racism and Xenophobia.


The National Programme of Action A major deliverable of the Review Process is the NPOA

Real progress can only be guaranteed if NPOAs are implemented hence for the first time, Forum meeting in January 2009 was dedicated to progress in implementing NPOA .


The National Programme of Action Inter alia, the POA is expected to present among others:  Clear, time-bound commitments on key governance and socioeconomic development priorities over the next three 3 years, including the identification of key stakeholders for implementation, and the estimated budgetary implications and allocations; 

Description of the national consultations that have taken place in developing the National Programme of Action;

Outline the feedback mechanism established to keep local stakeholders involved in the process;

Description of the capacity building and resource mobilization requirements for undertaking the Programme of Action; and,

Outline the implementation, monitoring and evaluation mechanisms for the Programme of Action. 23

Budget of the NPOA in Reviewed Countries Democracy and Political Governance Ghana Rwanda Kenya South Africa Algeria Benin Uganda Nigeria Burkina Faso

Economic Governance and Management

Corporate Governance

118,982,083 235,305,000 2,684,361,693 (2.4%) (4.7%) (54.7%) 2,235,000 (1.4%) 20,484,000 (13%) 107,750,000 (67%) 8,829,000 45,772,000 4,946,658,000 (0.2%) (0.8%) (91.8. %) R1.003 billion R1.5335 billion R 0.204 billion (7.2%) (11.0%) (1.5%) 2,378,000,000 936,000,000 751,000,000 (40.5%) (16.0%) (12.8%) 586,370,000 7,340,000 1,004,260,000 (24.8%) (0.3%) (42.6%) 101,930,205 388,506,686 324,369,895 (2.1%) (8.0%) (6.7%) 5 billion 4 billion 3 billion (40%) (25%) (20%) 413,705,000 160,060,000 2,750,390,000 (10.5%) (3.3%) (56.0%)

Socio-Economic Development

Total USD

1,867,150,000 5,000,000,000 (37.3%) 31,269,000 (19%) 161,738,000 387,145,000 (7.2%) R 11.161 billion (83.5%) 1,800’000,000 (30.7%) 758,120,000 (32.2%) 4,035,295,788 (83.1%) 8 billion (15%) 1,583,060,000 (32.3%)

5,388,404,000 R13.9015 billion 5,865,000,000 2,356,090,000 4,857,102, 574 20 billion 4,907,215,000


Experience in implementing the NPOAs 

Demonstrable commitment by all countries that have gone through the review process. They are enthusiastically implementing the NPOA, in spite of several formidable challenges, some even before they were peer reviewed;

There are daunting challenges, including the establishment of appropriate national structures to monitor the NPOA, proper costing and ensuring that it is not a wish list (need for prioritization). No format until recently.

Capturing key findings and conclusions of the peer review processes (overarching issues);

Overlap between the NPOAs and other national initiatives sometimes, resulting in double costing of interventions. While NPOAs are not designed to be a substitute to other ongoing national initiatives such as the PRSPs or National Development Strategies (NDS), the comparative value added must be captured and disseminated.


Key Challenges Rrequisite institutional mechanism are lacking in some countries to take forward the post-review process, since the Governing Council was disbanded immediately after the peer review exercise. In others, key stakeholders are not kept informed about the APRM process after the review process; The monitoring and evaluation component needs a lot of development. (Country specific); and, Perhaps the major challenge is the capacity and resource gaps which are pervasive; and there is need for additional resources to support the implementation of the NPOA.



Key Lessons The APRM is a unique African instrument that is trialblazing and has great potential as a tool to promote and strengthen good governance. It is African in origin, African inspired and African-owned. The experiences from the APRM implementation process are very encouraging. The process has been empowering in ways that were not envisaged when it started. It has spawned and strengthening a culture of political dialogue in the countries . 27

Conclusion The APRM is making it possible for countries to benchmark good governance in Africa on shared African and international norms and standards as well as for citizens to participate in the evaluation of how they are governed. It is show-casing African innovative thinking in governance. An area where the rest of the world can learn useful lessons from Africa.


Thank you for your attention WWW.