As detailed in the CPAP (Jan 2007- Dec
2011), the UNDP will employ a holistic approach to governance and
human rights to strengthen the democratic process in the Gambia
through enhanced capacity building, improved opportunity for gender
equality, mainstreaming human rights into national policies, strengthened
key governance institutions and sustainable and transparent electoral
processes and systems to sustain democratic principles. To implement
this strategy, the following programmes and projects have been prepared
and signed with the government:
Projects and some specific achievements include:
UNDP recognizes the pivotal role E-Governance and Information,
Communication and Information technology can play in the attainment
of the MDG-based PRSP II. UNDP’s support to The Gambia is
helping Government improve efficiency in internal government operations
and public service delivery. It has also enabled Government to
provide for open and transparent processes as well as greater
citizen participation and involvement.
A priority area for UNDP’s intervention in The Gambia’s
E-Governance Strategy was the design and development of a Government
Web Portal for the first time in The Gambia.
• Already 22 Government agencies have been included in the
• Practical training for Government Web Portal Administrators
on the maintenance and development of web templates for government
• Establishment of E-Government Data Centre and Web Portal
Unit at the Ministry of Information. The Centre has provided the
Ministry with a ready infrastructure for efficient and effective
communications, information sharing and information management.
The Centre also coordinates and ensures the sustainability of
the web portal by facilitating regular updates and maintenance
of the government web sites.
• UNDP has also supported the 2009 National E-Readiness
Assessment Report. The Report provided the basis for the selection
and prioritization of future E-Government projects. A Key recommendation
of the Report is the development of the Ministry of Information’s
infrastructure to enable it take a leadership and coordinating
role in the formulation and implementation of e-government initiatives.
• In the mean time and as a matter of urgency, UNDP is currently
supporting the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to upgrade its ICT
facilities and improve communications between the Ministry and
its diplomatic missions. This is a major aspect of The Ministry’s
Foreign Policy Strategy Document, 2010-2015.
Implementing Partner: Ministry of information Communication
TO THE OFFICE OF THE CHIEF JUSTICE.
It is evident that “justice delayed is justice denied”
and the accumulation of cases in the court system serves as a
major constraint in the efficient and effective administration
of justice in any given country. As at July 2009, 70% of cases
in the High Courts and Magistrate Courts were backlogged. UNDP
is supporting the Office Chief Justice through implementation
of short-term measures that have so far enhanced access to justice,
strengthened institutional weaknesses in terms of court rules
and procedures and improved management skills of magistrates.
More specifically, UNDP’s collaboration with the Office
of The Chief Justice has resulted in the following:
• Significant reduction in backlog of cases in the Magistrates
Courts (1420 cases addressed within 6 months) through UNDP support
for court sittings on Saturdays.
• For the first time, the Judiciary now has a functional
website, with up-to-date information including judgements
• Management/Leadership and ICT skills of 30 Magistrates,
10 Court Registrars and 10 Administrative staff have been strengthened
through training programmes at the MDI.
• Introduction of the Rules of Procedure of Children’s
Court and Industrial Tribunal
• High Court Rules were amended and it has ensured the expeditious
disposal of cases. Operational Manual of the Sheriff’s Division
of the High Court was also developed.
• Development of Cadi Courts Rules of Procedure. Cadi Court
officials have just concluded their capacity development programme
in September, 2010.
• 30 new computers and accessories were purchased for 30
Magistrates and these facilities have improved case management
in the Magistrate Courts.
• Plans are currently underway to recruit a specialist to
establish a Planning Monitoring and Evaluation Unit in the Office
of the Chief Justice.
Project duration: 2009- 2011.
Total cost of project: $178,000.
Implementing Partner-Office of the Chief Justice
ACCESS TO JUSTICE.
In addition to supporting the Office of the Chief Justice, the
UNDP is working with the Alternative Dispute Resolution Secretariat
and the Legal Aid Agency as part of the Government’s efforts
to improve access to justice by the poor and vulnerable. Consequently,
• the Alternative Dispute Resolution Secretariat has been
equipped with modern office equipments which has facilitated its
operations and two pilot regional ADR centres have been established
so that alternative dispute resolution facilities are extended
to the rural population, where the majority of the people are
unable to afford the services of lawyers.
• Nation wide advocacy and awareness raising campaigns on
the concept of alternative dispute resolution have been organized
in Banjul, Basse, Mansakonko. Local government authorities (Chiefs
and Alkalos ) have expressed great interest in using the concept
in their areas as it has potential to enhance social peace and
• The Project on Access to Justice has also supported a
Study Tour to Ghana for staff of the Alternative Dispute Resolution
Secretariat and the members of the Board for the Legal Aid Agency.
Lessons learnt from Ghana which has extensive experiences in Access
to Justice will be used in The Gambia.
Project duration: 2009- 2011
Total cost of Project: $350,000.
Implementing Partner-Ministry of Justice
TO THE NATIONAL ASSEMBLY.
Our intervention in this area is aimed at strengthening the capacity
of the National Assembly to deliver its core functions of legislating,
oversight, scrutiny and representation. Specifically, the project
has achieved the following:
• The National Assembly library has been restructured with
an E-Library system and library staff are now acquainted with
library administration, file management and they are now able
to retrieve information in a timely and cost effective manner
for National Assembly members.
• Equipments have been procured and installed for the digitalized
recording of National Assembly and Committee meetings. 10 staff
of the National Assembly have successfully completed training
on HANSARD and digital recordings.
• Sixty members of the National Assembly and staff will
complete training on ICT before end November. In the mean time,
a Local Area Network (LAN) has been installed and 30 computers
connected to the LAN. This is expected to reduce costs of internet
• Capacity of National Assembly members have been strengthened
in key oversight roles (Public Accounts and Public Enterprise
Committees) and national development policies like the MDG-based
PRSP II and pro-poor budgeting.
• Six staff of the National Assembly were trained on Records
Management skills and procedures.
• A Strategic Plan of Action and a Resource Mobilisation
Strategy has been prepared and these are to be the main working
documents for a proposed Donors Conference for National Assembly.
• National Assembly members’ oversight functions have
been subjected to a social audit through support for a regional
outreach forum in Tendaba. The next forum will be held in Kanifing
by end October.
• Capacity of NAMs and staff on parliamentary procedures
and rules will be enhanced through the preparation of a Parliamentary
Handbook. A consultant is being recruited to prepare the Handbook.
• The National Assembly website has been updated and launched.
SERVICE REFORM AND INSTITUTIONAL CAPACITY DEVELOPMENT PROJECT.
Government has now put in place a comprehensive set of national
policy frameworks (i.e MDG-based PRSP II and VISION 20/20) outlining
The Gambia’s vision, strategies and programmes for poverty
reduction and sustained economic growth. There is serious concern
that human and institutional capacities to formulate policies
and implement programmes are not only limited but eroding as well.
This project is therefore aimed at strengthening government strategic
leadership and coordination of capacity development and public
service reform, development and implementation of short-term measures
to address pressing capacity gaps in key government institutions
and development of systems and structures that will enable key
government institutions to carry out their functions efficiently
To achieve this, the following activities have been carried out:
• A Board has been established by Cabinet to coordinate
all capacity development initiatives in the Gambia. It is co-chaired
by the Secretary General and the UNDP Resident Representative.
• Several training programmes for various categories of
civil servants have been prepared following a capacity gaps assessment
of 12 government agencies. The recruitment of training firms is
• Both international and national UNVs are being recruited
to fill critical capacity gaps.
• Strategic Plans for 10 government agencies have been prepared
and validated. There are 2 outstanding ones. These strategic plans
are beginning to change attitudes with emphasis now being put
on results-based planning. Government agencies are now required
to present their strategic plans in order to have their annual
• The legal framework for the public service has been reviewed
and updated. These include the Public Service Act, General Orders,
Public Service Regulations, Civil Service Code of Conduct and
Surety Bonds. A pool of PMO/PSC staff will be trained in these
new regulations and they are be expected to train relevant staff
in 12 government agencies.
• The Data Management System at the National Records Service
(NRS) has been improved. NRS units in the 12 beneficiary government
agencies are being provided with uniform computerized system to
register documents and profiles, replacing the current manual
TO THE UNIVERSITY OF THE GAMBIA.
As the lead agency in support of capacity development, it is important
that higher education in The Gambia is prioritized to provide
for relevant and high-quality skills and research that in turn
will accelerate socio-economic growth and technological advances
in The Gambia. This implies putting the new University on a firm
footing so that it can train men and women who can then provide
the requisite intellectual leadership and skills to implement
the MDG-based PRSP II and The Gambia’s Vision 20/20.
Key areas for strategic support to the tertiary education system
were provided through two Memoranda of Understanding (MOU) signed
in November 2009 for the rehabilitation of learning facilities
at the School of Business and Public Administration, MDI and at
the School of Law respectively. The total amount provided was
just over 9 million Dalasis.
Positive results are beginning to emerge and these include:
• The transformation of the old chancellery into a respectable
Law School equipped with a reference library. The presence of
well-respected School of Law will assist in the indigenization
efforts of the Government and build capacity to ensure judicious
expedition of court cases. Legal clinics are being established
within the School of Law and it is expected they will help in
reducing the backlog of cases in the court system.
• School of Business and Public Administration(MDI) is now
in a stronger position to improve the quality of teaching and
expand the number of graduates that can fill critical capacity
gaps in the public and private sectors.
• With these recent improvements in physical infrastructures
and learning facilities, University authorities are beginning
to detect a new sense of pride and a positive attitude to learning
on the part of the students. This has already led to
a) Increased and improved tuition payments thus making it possible
for the UTG to cover some operating costs
b) The modernized campuses have also generated renewed interests
from the government agencies, the private sector and the CSO-NGO
community for the training of their staff
c) UTG is using UNDP’s support to leverage additional assistance
from other donors. There has been an increase in donations and
funding from local and external sources to the UTG over the last
couple of months
d) Faculty and staff morale have increased due to the improve
image of the University.
Project duration: 2010-2011
Total Project cost: $540,000.
Implementing Partner-University of The Gambia
7)Women Empowerment and
Project seeks to consolidate the gains made in a previous UNDP
project (Women in the Decision Making Process, 2007-2009). Main
outputs include strengthening the legal and policy frameworks
to protect women, institutional strengthening and capacity development
of the Women’s Bureau to coordinate, promote and influence
laws and policies that address systemic and attitudinal obstacles
to gender equality.
Total Project cost: $185,000