Citizen Action Network for Accountability (CANA)

The Citizen Action Network for Accountability in the Philippines works to improve public services provided in our communities in general and to the poorest and most marginalized in particular.

CANA believes simply that more we ordinary people can understand and engage the government, the more accountable and effective we can all hold it to be.

Latest Work

Citizens force city to improve quality control of public works: A simple story on how citizen action compelled the government to repair a foot bridge previously declared complete yet unusable during rainy days.

Citizens encouraged to monitor government projects, spending: A national broadcast report in Filipino featuring CANA’s views and work in encouraging citizen action to fight corruption and demand for good governance.

Facebook: Citizen Action NetTwitter: @CitizenActionPH

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Alcalde, cómo vamos?

 

Alcalde, cómo vamos? is a platform of more than 40 social, academic and business organizations that agree to work for the civic and democratic maturity of the Nuevo León State in Mexico.

They have proposed 10 concrete actions to all candidates for Mayor in the 9 neighboring municipalities of Monterrey during the 2012 electoral process.Elected mayors of Monterrey, Guadalupe, Apodaca, San Nicolas de los Garza, San Pedro Garza Garcia, Santa Catarina, Escobedo, and Juárez García signed a commitment to perform these actions between 2012 and 2015.

During these three years, the platform is measuring, comparing and communicating the level of compliance of each action in each municipality.

Alcalde, cómo vamos? it is an unprecedented instrument for accountability that can contribute to changing the relationship between citizens and local authorities.

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Fin al abuso (1st Campaign)

The project measures the amount of money annually stolen and diverted from education in Mexico, and holds a permanent campaign to advertise and display what could have been done in the education field in Mexico with the money that is lost to corruption. Additionally, “Fin al abuso” encourages citizens to join electronic campaigns and take legal action to demand that money spent on education is rightly used.

First campaign

Following up a three years movement named “Where is my teacher?”, Fin al abuso is leading a group of organizations demand for a single, complete and reliable registry of basic education teachers. The obligation to submit such registry was established in the enactment of the Mexican Federal Spending Decrees for 2010, 2011, and 2012; however, it does not exist so far.

Fin al Abuso, has detected (by name) 22,353 people, who are paid an income as teachers or principals, yet are not teaching. These people are the so-called “union commissioners” (UC) teacher union workers whose salaries cost Mexicans at least 1.7 billion pesos every year.

 Mexicanos Primero

“¡Fin al abuso!”  denounced this wrongdoing in 2012 and invited Mexicans to join the demand of more money to be allocated for education and less to be given to the Teachers Union.

The campaign collected signatures at public spaces, universities and forums; and had broad media presence in Mexico City, Tepic, Tijuana, Guadalajara and Monterrey.

In three months 230,240 citizens signed the campaign and 115 NGOs supported the initiative.

With each collected signature a letter demanding public resources to be well used was sent to the President of Mexico, the presidents of the Senate and House of Representatives, and the Ministers of Education and of Finance. If these Union Commissioners are essential to the SNTE (teachers’ union), then they should be paid from union dues deducted from teacher salaries. Those who signed received a reply from the federal authorities.

SEP (Secretariat of Public Education) and the SNTE reacted differing only in regards to the number of UC: SEP reported that there were “only12,704 commissioners whilst the SNTE admitted having over 160,000 commissioners.

In a second conference, Fin al Abuso published a document supported by the National Bar Association of Mexico (Ilustre y Nacional Colegio de Abogados de México) concluding that the payment of UC from the federal treasury is illegal.

 

 Twitter: @Finalabuso    •   YouTube: MexicanosPrimero  • Facebook: FinAlAbuso

Open doors for the citizens of Razgrad

The project’s main goal was the establishment of civic control over local self-government through the institutionalization of a civic defender (ombudsman) in the municipal administration of Razgrad. Some of its main activities included: 1. information board for corruption signals in the office building of the Municipality; 2. realization of a public forum “Civic Defense and Mediation Through the Local Ombudsman Institution””; 3. dissemination of materials / reports of the ombudsman and press conferences.”

Creation of the strategy for development of local selfgovernment of Bosnia&Herzegovina with the involvement of the crucial stakeholders

The main objectives of the project were: (1) to introduce the question of local governence and decentralisation as the priority in the process of reforms in BIH; (2) creation of the leading nucleus of crucial national stakeholders (from pubic administration, NGOs, other leading practitioners and experts in the field of good governance) as a driving force for the creation and implementation of the strategy; (3) creation of the integral, systematically established and generally accepted strategy for development of local government in BIH; (4) establishement of new qualitative approach for the policy and practice for the creation of solutions for local level in BIH (bottom-up instead top-down).

Active citizens – transparent local authority

The project aimed to establish a partnership between the structures of the civil society and the local authorities for increasing the public opinion towards the municipal administration in the city of Lovech through more transparent and eased access to information. The major goal was to develop a mechanism for public control. The project included: 1. assessments and evaluation of: the legal framework related to the internal organization of the administration; the mechanisms for monitoring and control; the transparency and the potential risks for corruption (potential risk points and practices); the effectiveness of the local councils for their cooperation with the municipal administration;2. formulation of recommendations and best practices; 3. precise proposals for the municipality of Lovech on how to improve its methodology for service delivery in order to be more transparent and accessible; 4. realization of educational seminars for representatives from the civil society sector; 5. improvement of the web site of the administration; 6. activities for information and publicity (media publications, information brochures etc.)

Regional initiative for an integrity-related message

This regional project aimed to acknowledge the value of efforts made by caricaturists and investigative journalists in promoting a public integrity (anti-corruption) message in South-Eastern European countries. The project involves investigative journalists and caricaturists from Bulgaria, Hungary, Serbia, Macedonia, the Czech Republic, the Republic of Moldova and Romania. The locales of the projects were Busteni and Bucharest, Romania. The following were partners in the project: Media Monitoring Agency – Catavencu Academy, Cartoonist Network Rights – Romania, Goethe Institute Bucharest.

Face to face with corruption: institutionalization of the civic defender and public councils to fight corruption at municipal level

The project aimed to shape an adequate public counteraction against all forms of corruption. Advocacy and capacity building for the local Ombudsman institution (Public Mediator) in Banite municipality and multiplication of the experience (best practices) in other municipalities of the Rhodopa region were some of the projects core activities.

For Transparent and Accountable Local Government in Georgia

The goal of the project was to support implementation of the state program “Village Support” by training the LG trustees in territorial units in participatory methodologies, so that they will be able to conduct participatory needs assessments and problem prioritization in their communities. Also, during the project the special training for CBO and local NGO representatives on civil monitoring was organized, so they will be able to monitor the activities of LG trustees in local communities.

Development and introduction of multiple models of self-government units in Bosnia&Herzegovina

The objective of the project was the creation of a new basic model of local self-governance in BIH through the introduciton of multiple structure with different jurisdiction and with differential legal status of local units in order to create enough flexible basis for the functional and fiscal decentralisation of BIH.

Transparent County Councils!?

The project aims to: 1. assess and improve the current state of affairs regarding performance reporting practices of Romanian county level political decision makers; 2. enhance policy-learning among local decision makers in performance reporting and the publishing of assessment results; 3. showcase best practice in performance reporting and directly target political decision makers with assessment results and recommendations on how to improve their performance reports; 4. raise public awareness on performance reporting practices of political decision makers.

Responsibility through transparency – access to public information in Romania and Yugoslavia

The project aimed to accomplish an evaluation of the current situation regarding access to public information in Romania and Yugoslavia and to promote free access to information in a public campaign carried out in both countries. The project’s locales are Bucharest and Belgrade.Transparency International Romania is the main organization implementing this project, in partnership with the Centre for Policy Studies in Belgrade.

Local ombudsman in the Rhodope region municipalities – establishing a best practice model for monitoring, civil control and partnership

The project aimed to establish an efficient civic control on the services provided by local authorities and to guarantee the access of citizens to public services. Some of the project main activities were: 1. building premises for the establishment of local Ombudsman institution in the municipalities of Chepelare, Banite and Nedelino; 2. realization of three round tables with participants from the local authorities on the discussion on the Ombudsman institution; 3. radio broadcast on the topic: “100 answers about corruption””; 4. development of an anti-corruption web site; 5. realization of a closing regional conference regarding the prospects for an efficient work of the local Ombudsman institution.”

Regional support for the realization of the strategy for local self-governance

The goal of this bilateral project (between BIH and Serbia) was to (1) analyze the importance of decentralisation, especially the fiscal decentralisaton, governance, good quality management in local adminsitration, vertical and horizontal relations between local and other level of governance, as well as to analyze the level of cooperation betweeen local communities – after this analysis the goal was to (2) prepare and distribute the publication on good practices, challenges and experiences and to promote alternative steps towards decentralisation in BIH and Serbia.

Open Local Government

The project was performed as the continuation of 2006 project Youth for Transparency where three municipalities participated – Mazeikiai District Municipality, Elektrenai Municipality and Anyksciai District Municipality. Participants from these municipalities acted as trainers and experts in Open Local Government project. 7 new municipalities were involved into this project. The main aim of the project was to raise awareness of local community (local authorities, schools, youth, NGO, media ect.) of the necessity to play an active role in support of civil society. Project objectives were: To support local leaders for developing and multiplying of local programmes for anticorruption and transparency education in the region; To develop and implement local programmes for anticorruption and transparency education in leading municipalities; To promote local programmes for anticorruption and transparency education in the region by local teams through cooperation with media, NGOs, other communities; To built the international experience exchange and means of multiplying the programmes for anticorruption and transparency education on the local level. In total, there were 24 schools, 122 students, 56 teachers, 18 servants of municipalities directly participating in this project. The project consisted of: 1) Preparing trainings for experts, trainers and local leaders; 2) Workshops for local teams; 3) Meetings of youth leaders with elected local government representatives and parliament members; 4) Educational materials; 5) Preparing and implementation the local programmes of education by each local team; 6) Local meetings with headmasters for promoting local programmes of education; 7) Educational activities with schools, public institutions; 8) Cooperation with all schools at the municipality; 9) Study visit in Poland; 10) Local presentation to spread out the results.

Monitoring county councils on conflicts of interests and incompatibilities (2008)

This project proposal aimed at addressing the issue of the fight against corruption by the civil society after accession, with a particular focus on conflicts of interests and incompatibilities.

Conflicts of interest and incompatibilities lie at the heart of corruption as the latter is based on the infringement of the public interests and of the requirements of public office for goals regarding private interests and private positions.

Members of 9 local county councils and 32 presidents of local county councils were scrutinized for conflicts of interests and incompatibilities. At the end of the project, a report was created underlining the local administration corruption cases. The project had an advocacy component aimed at correcting the loopholes in the legislation or in the enforcement of the law.

The purpose of the project  was to monitor officials from a number of county councils and the presidents of all county councils in relation to incompatibilities and conflicts of interests. A total of 315 county council members from 9 counties were monitored on the two aspects, out of which 31 did not meet the integrity criteria. The situation of county council presidents was also assessed, and in 15 out of the 42 cases the integrity criteria were not met.
This project was continued before the first direct election of county council presidents, when 150 candidates were verified using the criteria designed for the Coalition for Clean Government project (namely, on corruption, conflicts of interests, political migration and collaboration with the secret police before 1989). Out of these, 54 were included on a “black list” for not meeting the integrity requirements imposed. In 9 of the counties, candidates appearing on the list of the Coalition lost the elections, even though they were considered favorites in the polls made public during the campaign. These 9 counties were Bihor, Bistrita-Nasaud, Botosani, Cluj, Galati, Giurgiu, Mehedinti, Timis si Tulcea.

Strengthening the Role of Rural Associations in Democratic Processes in Georgia (STAGE)

The STAGE project aims to build the capacity of rural associations through improving management structures and staff skills, raising awareness, establishing relationships with the private sector and national-level organisations, which are able to advocate for local development at the central government level. Since November 2006, the project has been working in eight municipalities of Georgia: Borjomi, Akhaltsikhe, Aspindza and Adigeni in Samtskhe-Javakheti and Gardabani, Marneuli, Tetristskaro and Tsalka in Kvemo Kartli. This 30-month project, funded by “Austrian Development Cooperation and Cooperation with Eastern Europe” (ADC) (for more information please visit: www.mfa.at/adc, www.ada.gv.at), is implemented by CARE Oesterreich (Austria) and CARE International in the Caucasus in partnership with three local non-governmental organisations: Georgian Young Lawyers Association (GYLA), Civitas Georgia and Civil Development Agency (CiDA).”

Developing conditions for better transparency and control of the governance through open and transparent procedures of public procurement

The aim of the project was to improve the transparency and accountability of the local administration, transforming it into a reliable business partner, through the application of procedures of good governance in the public procurement processes. The project activities included: 1. focus-groups with representatives of the local administration and business in order to define the major deficiencies in the public procurement process; 2. formation of a work group charged with the task to develop a report regarding the major problems and relevant policies for improvement of the public procurement procedures; 3. development of a “technical guidance document”” for the private sector aimed to help the business in the public procurement tenders; 4. development of an e-learning program for the target groups regarding the governance principles of the public procurement procedures.”

Youth for Transparency

The main aim of the project was to develop attitudes and meet expectations of young citizens in building the transparency and accountability of the public life on the local level, through education and through encouraging community cooperation on local and international levels.

Objectives

  • To engage local authorities and schools in common building and realizing the local policy of public administration monitoring.
  • To present the social control mechanisms in the subject of transparency and ways of corruption prevention for the students.
  • To cooperate with local authorities and schools in developing the local system of getting and disseminating information on the public institution functioning.
  • To build the international experience exchange and means of dissemination social control mechanism through education forum.

 

Target groups and beneficiaries

  • Youth: the project’s direct addressees are young people aged 13-18 years (students of gymnasium schools) in Poland and Lithuania living in places covered by the Programme, those who will one day become full citizens taking part in their local community life, also as the potential clients of offices in their localities (3900 students).
  • Local authorities chosen for the project: direct beneficiaries are local governments invited to co-operation (10 in Poland and 3 in Lithuania) their representatives who, assisted by the planned activities, are expected to build a positive image of the office and to work to improve confidence in public institutions (13 local governments, 65 representatives).
  • Teachers from the schools that will take part in the project: the Programme’s intermediate beneficiaries are also school teachers involved in its implementation and all the residents of counties and municipalities covered by the Programme, who will become addressees of activities carried out by school students and local government staff members (260 teachers).
  • Local community: all inhabitants in those regions where the project will be conducted (3000 adult inhabitants).