- Free Essays, Term Papers & Book Notes

The Historic Responsibility of Civil Society in the Prs Consultative Council

By:   •  Essay  •  1,497 Words  •  June 12, 2010  •  1,703 Views

Page 1 of 6

The Historic Responsibility of Civil Society in the Prs Consultative Council

The historic responsibility of civil society in the PRS Consultative Council

Civil Society’s reaction to the decision of the National Congress was brief:

“The civil society group CCERP presented to the minister of Culture and coordinator of the Social Cabinet, Rodolfo Pastor, its renunciation of the approval of a General National Budget that transfers part of the funds from cancelled debt to a budget consignment that will be managed by a Council of mayors (with parallel structure to CCERP), as well as the approval of only very ambiguous criteria that will likely lead to the politicization of the PRS. In a special session of the CCERP, Blanca Barahona, temporary coordinator of the civil society sector of CCFRP, supported by the rest of the group, argued that this decision is irrevocable if there is not a repeal and a corrected version of the article issued on the part of the Honduran government. Concurrently, a large group of regional representatives demonstrated near the Legislative building, demanding from Congress the repeal of the article that nearly eliminates the Law of the Fund for Poverty Reduction and minimizes the role of the CCERP.”

The decision of the Consultative Council of the Fund for Poverty Reduction (CCFRP) took many spheres of society by surprise, including the Executive and Legislative powers as well as International bodies, none of whom anticipated any protest of this extent. As a result of the news, the civil society members of the Council began a series of public demonstrations, interviews and press conferences to try to force a legislative correction; at the same time the Legislative chamber and the Government embarked upon a campaign to discredit civil society and try to divide the movement.

What and who are the CCFRP? Who elected them? Who do they represent? These were some of the many questions being posed in the media with the aim of disinformation and evasion of discussion of the fact that 700 million Lempiras (more than US$36 million) originally destined for projects within the PRS had been diverted to other expenses in the 2006 General National Budget.

However, these questions have helped to clarify that the CCFRP is a body created in 2002 that is actually an integration of 12 civil society organizations: The Association of Honduran Municipalities (AMHMON), the National Congress, six Secretaries of State and two observers from the international community. The fundamental objective of the CCFRP is to seek consensus and define together the projects that will be financed with the resources from debt cancellation, as well as to carry out the processes of social audit on themselves. The aim of the CCFRP has never been the execution or administration of the resources from the PRS.

The twelve representatives of civil society and their respective substitutes were nominated by their own civil society organization and together represent the organizations of their sector rather than their own specific organizations. The selection was made in open assemblies of each of the sectors, organized by the Secretary of Governance and Justice, whose presence also served to speak to the legality of the assemblies.

In the CCFRP there are also foreign observers who are appointed under their own mechanisms (G-16), and are considered part of the multilateral bodies as well as part of the group of cooperating countries.

One weak point in the integration of the CCFRP is that the Regional Strategies to Combat Poverty (ECP’s), five in total, have not been able to legally integrate themselves with this mechanism. To date, their participation in the meetings has been limited to that of “guests,” who may speak but not vote.

The participation of the diverse entities of civil society and of the representatives of regional ECP’s clarified again the importance of networks, resources and proceedings, as well as of the recipients of PRS funds themselves. The empowerment of local and regional actors to participate actively in the programs and projects of PRS as well as their sectors’ committees furthers the Millennium Goals and Objectives.

As part of this work, article 14 of the CCFRP Regulations established that “the Council will recommend to the Social Cabinet the projects and programs eligible for financing with PRS funds on the basis of ‘Methodology to Identify and Prioritize Programs and Projects in the Framework of the PRS,’ properly approved.”

Legally, the CCFRP is the integrated request of representatives of the government and civil society to assess the process of the allocation of resources in the PRS framework, based on the requirements to complete the goals of the strategy. The allocation of resources is defined in the document “Mechanisms

Download as (for upgraded members)  txt (9.2 Kb)   pdf (125.9 Kb)   docx (13.7 Kb)  
Continue for 5 more pages »