By: Aruna Lahai, Public Education Officer, ACC
The Anti–Corruption Commission (ACC) in partnership with the National Commission for Social Action (NaCSA) has from 24th to 26th February, 2023, conducted a 3-day training for Community Monitors (CM) on the implementation strategy of the “Productive Social Safety Net and Youth Employment Project (PSSNYE)” Emergency Cash Transfer (ECT) component and on the “Grievance Redress Mechanism” (GRM). The training was hosted in four regional locations – Makeni, Port Loko, Bo and Kenema and a total of 97 community monitors participated in the training alongside the ACC District Monitors.
The PSSNYE project is financed by the World Bank and the Government of Sierra Leone. The project’s development objective is to improve access to social safety nets and income generating opportunities for targeted beneficiaries. Component 5 of the project makes provision for Contingent Emergency Response (CER).
The Deputy Commissioner of ACC, Augustine Foday Ngobie as part of his support to the training made field visits to the training centers where he highlighted the importance of corruption prevention measures in Government and Donor funded projects for which the ECT implementation is no exception. He acknowledged the good work of the Community Monitors adding that the success gained so far by the ACC in GRM is as a result of their combined efforts. Mr. Ngobie further encouraged the Community Monitors to keep doing the good work which is highly recognized by the ACC Management.
GRM Coordinator ACC, Patrick Sundufu Morovia, in his address to participants emphasized on the importance of Community Monitors in helping the ACC carry out the monitoring role and in getting project feedbacks from communities and beneficiaries through the GRM. He implored participants to give their full time to the 3 days exercise as each CM will be assigned to a team during the field implementation of the ECT. He furthered that, the key mandate of the ACC in the project implementation is to monitor the project to ensure that actual beneficiaries are targeted, record all grievances/dissatisfactions that may arise during the course of implementation and ensure that grievances received are resolved. To be able to effectively and efficiently perform this function, the ACC works with field level Community Monitors, GRM boss asserted.
The Government of Sierra Leone through NaCSA is implementing component 5 (Contingent Emergency Response) of the PSSNYE Project through an Emergency Cash Transfer (ECT) to 35,000 beneficiaries using poverty as the foundational beneficiary criterion targeting female headed households, elderly headed households, and persons with disability, in 11 district headquarter towns in Sierra Leone. The beneficiary districts are Kambia, Karene, Koinadugu, Tonkolili, Falaba, Pujehun, Moyamba, Bonthe, Kailahun, Kono, and Western Area Rural.
To guide the roll out of the ECT implementation, NaCSA in partnership with ACC developed an implementation strategy to help in the identification of beneficiaries, grievance redress mechanism, and other related activities. The training was therefore organized to build the capacity of Community Monitors on the roles and responsibilities of ACC in the ECT implementation strategy and on Grievance Redress Mechanism. At the end of the three days training, Community Monitors will be able to gain knowledge on the ECT implementation strategy and in recording grievances from beneficiaries and stakeholders as the project implementation progresses.
Each targeted beneficiary will receive Two Thousand, Six Hundred and Sixty New Leones (Le 2,660-including cash out fee) as cash benefit through Orange Money, Finance Sierra Leone as Payment Service Provider. The key mandate of the Community Monitors in each of the teams is to record all potential grievances from potential beneficiaries and stakeholders as the implementation of activities in the ECT progresses in the 11 district headquarter towns.
All grievances recorded during the course of the ECT implementation will be uploaded in the GRM platform. In that instance, all administrative related grievances will be assigned to NaCSA which will be promptly resolved with feedback provided to the complainants. In a situation where corruption related grievances are received by Community Monitors, such grievances will only be handled by the ACC using the corruption investigation procedure.
The 3 days training
ended with team formations to work in the 11 beneficiary districts to validate
the prelisted potential of 35,000 beneficiaries; verify the potential
beneficiaries; participate in targeting of beneficiaries and monitor payment of
cash to the beneficiaries