The Republic of South Sudan faces immense challenges to recovery and development posed by a complex set of security, political and socio-economic factors. The public finance management systems in south Sudan are weak and still in their infancy, the legal framework still has many gaps and the country has no credible long term resource planning and allocation framework. Expenditure of public funds does not always conform to the approved budgets and funds are not always fully and properly recorded. The frequency and timeliness of financial reporting by the states has significantly improved with the introduction of the monthly meetings of the State Transfers Monitoring Committee, although the Committee notes that most of the financial report are incomplete and do not cover all transactions. Most importantly, most spending agencies do not conduct budget performance evaluations to inform resource allocation and management in the next cycle.
These challenges call for effective tools to assist the new government in identifying and prioritizing interventions that can enhance peace and stability.
The SDPPFM project was established in January 2012 with the aim of supporting all three levels of government (national, state and county) to implement a comprehensive poverty and conflict-sensitive development agenda, by building its capacity for evidence based planning, budgeting, programme execution, resource mobilization and allocation, as well as to ensure sound accounting of internal and external resources. The project is constituted from four related previous projects, namely Support to States (SSP) Local Government Recovery Project (LGRP), Support to Economic Planning (SEP) and the Crisis and Recovery Mapping and Analysis (CRMA) projects.
Therefore a key element of this project is the existing information management support to the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), provided through the CRMA component as part of UNDP’s packaged technical assistance aimed at enhancing capacities of government institutions to effectively produce, analyze and strategically intervene in conflict and crisis prevention and recovery.
This has primarily been done through the establishment of an Information Management Working Group (IMWG), a common platform for information sharing and management between governmental institutions and international partners in South Sudan. The platform, hosted by the national Bureau of Statistics (NBS) utilizes integrated information tools to facilitate multi-actor collaboration and coordination, with an updating mechanism that provides all recovery and development actors with a common basic package of available and relevant information for their individual analysis and planning efforts.
The project has also worked with government and community actors to develop a template for state and community-level participatory workshops that capture community perceptions of priorities and emerging risks. This community level process serves to provide a link between state and population with the findings feeding directly back into state policy. As such, an initial cycle of direct support to state-level mapping of key socio-economic threats and risks has been conducted with the full involvement of relevant state and local authorities. The methodology focuses on a participatory and consultative approach, ensuring leadership and ownership of the process is firmly embedded with the project’s counterparts.
The project also offers tailored technical support to UN agencies, government partners, INGOs and other actors in their work on needs assessments, disaster risk reduction and early warning as well as monitoring and evaluation, using GIS based analysis and planning support tools.