THE EFFECTIVENESS OF ACCESS TO INFORMATION ACT No. 6 OF 2005 IN        PROMOTING PARTICIPATORY DEVELOPMENT IN UGANDA      ...
ABSTRACTDevelopment is a complex multi-dimensional concept based on the expansion of capabilities leadingto enrichment of ...
CONTENTSABSTRACT.............................................................................................................
6.2 Recommendations .........................................................................................................
DECLARATIONI, Ogillo Mark Pascal, hereby declare that this dissertation is my original work, and other workscited or used ...
DEDICATIONThis academic paper is dedicated to that woman called my mother; Fibi, Nyadiedo, the woman fromAdiedo.          ...
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTThis LLB has been a long walk. As I look back now, I am humbled by my own perseverance and thesupport of my...
LIST OF ABBREVIATIONSACHPR       African Commission on Human and Peoples’ RightsACSRT       African Centre for the Study a...
ix
-Chapter One- INTRODUCTION           1.0       CHAPTER SUMMARYThis chapter serves as the introduction, and provides the ge...
information. Indeed, the refusal of the government of Uganda to disclose the details of thecompanies mining oil8 and the s...
rights instruments (Art. 10, ECHR; Art. 13, ACHR; Art 13, ACHPR) 17. Indeed, the UN has declaredaccess to information to b...
allow the public to enhance social choice in the production of ‘life sustaining’ necessities such as food,shelter, and hea...
basis for further criticisms and development of the knowledge on the need for information fordevelopment and the role of l...
The paper is however not an exhaustive survey of the topics presented but provides a criticalanalysis to how the current l...
specific degree of participation of different stakeholders is determined through a negotiationprocess, but the challenge i...
economy. As per the doctrine of participation, development is both a process and a result, henceoutcome.Ekins (1986) argue...
Everett Rogers (1976) on the other hand looked more closely at specific development projects andthe adoption of new techno...
to be “…the touchstone of all freedoms.”38 The above means that the government is obliged, as dutybearers, to fulfill, pro...
-Chapter Two- PARTICIPATORY DEVELOPMENT            2.0       CHAPTER SUMMARYThis chapter is an incisive analysis of the co...
participation is the essence of democracy. Heberlein (1976) notes that public involvement results inbetter decisions.   b)...
a) Institutional StructureCitizen participation is chiefly facilitated with an appropriate organizational structure. Sills...
2.3       DEFINING PARTICIPATORY DEVELOPMENTParticipatory development is also referred to as Participation in Development4...
status"53, right participate effectively in society (Articles 13 and 14); and right to participation incultural life (Arti...
A critical analysis of the above international human rights documents exposes 5 (five) core principlesfor effective citize...
public is aware of the procedures for participation in decision-making and they have free access tothem and know how to us...
2.4     PARTICIPATORY DEVELOPMENT IN UGANDAUganda as a country has adopted various approaches for participatory developmen...
2.4.3 Mechanism for Strengthening Accountability in Local GovernanceUganda also has periodic elections which have a tenden...
2.5     CHALLENGES AND LESSONS FOR PARTICIPATORY DEVELOPMENTThe challenges and risks associated with participatory develop...
program set aside funds for the thousands of participating villages specifically for participatoryplanning at the sub-vill...
and presented their own action plans and logical frameworks viz. the format of the action plans, intheir communities.     ...
-Chapter Three- PROMOTING PARTICIPATORY DEVELOPMENT AS A HUMAN RIGHT            3.0      SUMMARYThis chapter is dedicated ...
e) involving in monitoring, evaluating and reporting3.1.2 Participation in the Context of the UN Programming ProcessPartic...
Further, the role of public participation in economic and human development was enshrined in the1990 African Charter for P...
Dissertation access to information & participatory development
Dissertation access to information & participatory development
Dissertation access to information & participatory development
Dissertation access to information & participatory development
Dissertation access to information & participatory development
Dissertation access to information & participatory development
Dissertation access to information & participatory development
Dissertation access to information & participatory development
Dissertation access to information & participatory development
Dissertation access to information & participatory development
Dissertation access to information & participatory development
Dissertation access to information & participatory development
Dissertation access to information & participatory development
Dissertation access to information & participatory development
Dissertation access to information & participatory development
Dissertation access to information & participatory development
Dissertation access to information & participatory development
Dissertation access to information & participatory development
Dissertation access to information & participatory development
Dissertation access to information & participatory development
Dissertation access to information & participatory development
Dissertation access to information & participatory development
Dissertation access to information & participatory development
Dissertation access to information & participatory development
Dissertation access to information & participatory development
Dissertation access to information & participatory development
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Dissertation access to information & participatory development

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This paper analyzes the relationship between the concept of participatory development and access to information with special reference to the role of access to information law in facilitating the popular and hitherto missing participation of the citizenry in development. The author opines that there is a gap in participation, and the recommends that the government has an obligation to provide the legal framework for popular participation in development.

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Dissertation access to information & participatory development

  1. 1. THE EFFECTIVENESS OF ACCESS TO INFORMATION ACT No. 6 OF 2005 IN PROMOTING PARTICIPATORY DEVELOPMENT IN UGANDA BY: Ogillo Mark Pascal Reg No. 09/K/29264/EVE Student No. 209022257 A DISSERTATION PRESENTED TO THE FACULTY OF LAW, MAKERERE UNVERSITY, IN PARTIALFULFILMENT OF THE REQUIREMENT FOR THE AWARD OF A DEGREE OF BACHELORS OF LAWS (LLB) (MAKERERE UNIVERSITY) June, 2011 "Knowledge will forever govern ignorance, and a people who mean to be their own governors, must arm themselves with the power knowledge gives. A popular government without popular information or the means of acquiring it; is but a prologue to a farce or a tragedy or perhaps both." -US President James Madison © 2011
  2. 2. ABSTRACTDevelopment is a complex multi-dimensional concept based on the expansion of capabilities leadingto enrichment of humans lives through producing ‘life sustaining’ necessities and enhancing socialchoice. However, the foregoing is only possible if the people have the freedom and capacity tochoose how they want to live. This choice is exercised through participation in development, aprocess through which stakeholders influence and share control over development initiatives andresources that affect them. This ability to choose subsumes that the citizens are capacitated throughinformation so as to make informed choices and subsequently qualitatively participate in the processof development.However, despite the centrality of the phenomena of development in the structure of governments;the inability of citizens to participate not only in the process of development, but also in sharing thebenefits of such development are rampant and exhibited through inter alia, the low lifeexpectancies; high levels of ignorance; and crippling poverty levels. In Uganda, the poverty isappalling. Uganda ranks 157th out of 182 countries in the 2009 Human Development Index.Whereas access to information helps promote participatory development, the ranking of Uganda inaccess to information and transparency is very low at 51 in the Open Budget Index with keydocuments and reports about in-year spending remaining inaccessible, making it extremely difficultfor the public to track what the government is receiving, spending and borrowing throughout eachyear. In addition, there is yet to be realized a one-stop portal for the four basic models of e-governance, namely, Government to Customer (Citizen), Government to Employees, Government toGovernment and Government to Business.The current regime of laws and institutions established by the Uganda government including theAccess to Information Act of 2005, are not sufficient to facilitate participatory development. Thelaw neither obligates the government to proactively disclose information, nor does it provide forcitizen activism in accessing such information. There is hence need for a comparative review of thecurrent access to information legislative framework in Uganda, with the aim of understanding thegaps and lacuna that creates this inertia and to promulgate a new legal regime that will go beyondmerely giving the citizen the right to access public information, but obligating both the governmentand private sector players to provide, proactively, certain types of information, which are necessaryfor the public to participate not only in governance, but also in to allow them to enhance socialchoice in the production of ‘life sustaining’ necessities such as food, shelter, and health care anderadicating ignorance.This paper analyzes the relationship between the concept of participatory development and accessto information with special reference to the role of access to information law in facilitating thepopular and hitherto missing participation of the citizenry in development. The author opines thatthere is a gap in participation, and the recommends that the government has an obligation toprovide the legal framework for popular participation in development. ii
  3. 3. CONTENTSABSTRACT........................................................................................................................................iiCONTENTS ......................................................................................................................................iiiDECLARATION.................................................................................................................................vSUPERVISOR’S APPROVAL...........................................................................................................vDEDICATION....................................................................................................................................viACKNOWLEDGEMENT.................................................................................................................viiLIST OF ABBREVIATIONS..........................................................................................................viii-Chapter One- INTRODUCTION.......................................................................................................1 1.0 Chapter Summary ....................................................................................................................1 1.2 Introduction & Contextual Background ..................................................................................1 1.3 Statement Of The Problem.........................................................................................................3 1.4 Purpose Of The Study ...............................................................................................................4 1.5 Research Questions....................................................................................................................4 1.6 Significance Of The Study.........................................................................................................4 1.7 The Research Methodology.......................................................................................................5 1.8 Review Of Literature.................................................................................................................6 1.9 Chapter Breakdown ...............................................................................................................10-Chapter Two- PARTICIPATORY DEVELOPMENT.....................................................................11 2.0 Chapter Summary ..................................................................................................................11 2.1 Participatory Development .....................................................................................................11 2.2 Development as Participation..................................................................................................13 2.3 Defining Participatory Development ......................................................................................14 2.4 Participatory development in Uganda......................................................................................18 2.5 Challenges and Lessons for participatory development .........................................................20 2.6 Case studies..............................................................................................................................20 2.7 Conclusion ..............................................................................................................................22-Chapter Three- PROMOTING PARTICIPATORY DEVELOPMENT AS A HUMAN RIGHT ..23 3.0 Summary ................................................................................................................................23 3.1 Participatory Development As Human Right..........................................................................23 3.2 Development as a Human Right..............................................................................................25 3.3 Criticisms of The Concept of Development as A Human Right ............................................30 3.4 Conclusion ..............................................................................................................................30-Chapter Four- UGANDA’S LEGAL & POLICY FRAMEWORK ON PARTICIPATORYDEVELOPMENT .............................................................................................................................31 4.0 Chapter Summary ...................................................................................................................31 4.1 The Province Of Law...............................................................................................................31 4.2 The Constitutional Framework For Popular Participation In Uganda.....................................31 4.3 The Statutory Framework For Popular Participation In Uganda.............................................32 4.4 Uganda’s Policy and Institutional Framework .......................................................................32 4.5 An Analysis Of Laws Encumbering Access To Information .................................................34-Chapter Five- AN ANALYSIS OF UGANDA’S ACCESS TO INFORMATION ACT NO. 6 OF2005....................................................................................................................................................37 5.0 Chapter Summary ...................................................................................................................37 5.1 Principles Of Participatory Development ..............................................................................37 5.2 About Freedom Of Information In Uganda.............................................................................37 5.3 Access To Information Act & Principles Of Participatory Development ..............................38 5.4 Conclusion ..............................................................................................................................42-Chapter Six- SUMMARY OF FINDINGS, CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS!....43 6.0 Chapter Summary ...................................................................................................................43 6.1 Summary Of Findings ............................................................................................................43 iii
  4. 4. 6.2 Recommendations ...................................................................................................................44 6.3 Conclusion...............................................................................................................................46 6.4 Implication for Future Research .............................................................................................47BIBLIOGRAPHY..............................................................................................................................48 iv
  5. 5. DECLARATIONI, Ogillo Mark Pascal, hereby declare that this dissertation is my original work, and other workscited or used are clearly acknowledged. This work has never been submitted to any University,College or other institution of learning for any academic or other award. Other works cited orreferred to are accordingly acknowledged. Signed: …………………………………………………………….. Date: ………………………………………………………………..SUPERVISOR’S APPROVALThis dissertation has been submitted for examination with my approval as University supervisor. Signed:……………………………………………………………… Prof. Frederick Jjuuko, Makerere University Date:………………………………………………………………….. v
  6. 6. DEDICATIONThis academic paper is dedicated to that woman called my mother; Fibi, Nyadiedo, the woman fromAdiedo. vi
  7. 7. ACKNOWLEDGEMENTThis LLB has been a long walk. As I look back now, I am humbled by my own perseverance and thesupport of my friends, family, clients & colleagues.I salute my father, Ojijo Paul and mother, Fibi Odira, for paying for my education, and for neverdoubting my choices. You motivated me to be more every day. Many thanks also to my friendsBooker, Jimmy, Wachira, Wanjohi, Hellen, Asli, Brenda, Rashida, Kamau, Prossy, Salim and Seko, fortheir support during my period in exile as a refugee in Uganda. Your sacrifice and support isdeeply appreciated and I owe you my best self. And when I was almost quitting, there was Ms.Joan, the registrar at the school of law, who took on the role of mother and mentor, to encourageme to finish the course. Thank you!This study was carried out under the supervision of Prof. Frederick Jjuuko, of the School of Law atMakerere University. I wish to thank him most sincerely for his diligent and valuable comments; andhi encouragement of open dialogue.Finally, I want to thank the Foundation for Human Rights Initiative, which paid for part my tuition andgave me protection as a refugee in Uganda. vii
  8. 8. LIST OF ABBREVIATIONSACHPR African Commission on Human and Peoples’ RightsACSRT African Centre for the Study and Research on TerrorismAU African UnionGA General Assembly (United Nations)HRW Human Rights WatchICJ International Commission of JuristsIGAD Intergovernmental Authority on DevelopmentLRA Lord’s Resistance ArmyOAU Organisation of African UnityPSC Peace and Security CouncilPD Participatory DevelopmentSC Security Council (United Nations)UDHR Universal Declaration of Human RightsUHRC Uganda Human Rights CommissionUNHCR United Nations High Commissioner for Human RightsUN United NationsUS United States of AmericaWHO World Health Organization viii
  9. 9. ix
  10. 10. -Chapter One- INTRODUCTION 1.0 CHAPTER SUMMARYThis chapter serves as the introduction, and provides the general background and framework for thestudy. It covers the introduction of the study, statement of the problem, purpose and objective of thestudy, research questions, justification and scope of study, literature review and methodology. 1.2 INTRODUCTION & CONTEXTUAL BACKGROUNDDevelopment is a complex multi-dimensional concept based on the expansion of capabilities leadingto enrichment of humans lives through producing ‘life sustaining’ necessities and enhancing socialchoice (Dudley Seers, 1971).1 However, the expansion of capabilities; production of necessities; andthe enhancement of social choice are only possible if the people have the freedom and capacity tochoose how they want to live (Amartya Sen, 1999).2 This choice is exercised through participation indevelopment. Participation in development, also referred to as participatory development, involvesboth taking part in deciding what development projects to be implemented, and sharing the benefitsaccruing from the development project (Tandon and Cordeiro, 1998). Through participatorydevelopment, the citizens can influence and share control over development initiatives, and over thedecisions and resources that affect their lives3. For effective participation, the citizens must becapacitated through information so as to make informed choices. 4 In Development as Freedom, Senargued that individuals act in their best interest whenever they have the choice, that is, when theypossess adequate knowledge.5 Indeed, for truly participatory development to take place anywherein a modern nation state, the people must have access to information. Information ensures publicawareness from which people can make informed choices, such as assessment of political andeconomic regimes. Confucius warned long ago that, "The people may be made to follow the course ofaction; but they may not be made to understand it." Access to information makes people understandthe course of action.However, despite the centrality of the phenomena of development in the structure of governments;the inability of citizens to participate not only in the process of development, but also in sharing thebenefits of such development are rampant and exhibited through inter alia, the low lifeexpectancies; high levels of ignorance; and crippling poverty levels. This is not lessened by the factthat over 30 countries now have laws that require the disclosure of government records either inseparate legislations in toto or as operative parts of their National Constitutions and various sectorallegislations and dozen more countries are considering passing access to information legislations.6Uganda’s Access to Information Act of 20057 has done little to promote participation of the citizensin the planning, implementation and sharing of resources. The law neither obligates the governmentto proactively disclose information, nor does it provide for citizen activism in accessing such1 Dudley Seers. (1971) Development in a Devided World” Oxford Univeristy Press2 Amartya Sen Development as Freedom Oxford University Press 19993 Framework for Mainstreaming Participatory Development Processes into Bank Operations, ADB. 19964 Pillar 2, AHHRIS Convention, Public Participation5 A. Sen, Development as Freedom (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1999).6 David Banisar. Freedom of Information and Access to Government Records Around the World, Privacy International, March 2001available http://pravovedet.ecn.cz/html/zahrleg/FOI_survey3.01.pdf accessed on July 20, 20097 The Uganda Gazette No. 42 Volume XCVIII dated 19th July, 2005
  11. 11. information. Indeed, the refusal of the government of Uganda to disclose the details of thecompanies mining oil8 and the subsequent harassment of the individuals who sought such informationrenders credence to the averment that the law is spineless in promoting participatory development.Uganda’s poverty is appalling. Uganda ranks 157th out of 182 countries in the 2009 HumanDevelopment Index of the United Nations Development Program9. The ranking of Uganda in accessto information and transparency is very low at 51 in the Open Budget Index with key documentsand reports about in-year spending remaining inaccessible, making it extremely difficult for thepublic to track what the government is receiving, spending and borrowing throughout each year.10Further, corruption, which is central to crippling development, 11is rampant in Uganda, with thecountry having been ranked at number 91 by Transparency International in 2010. TransparencyInternational’s (TI) 2010 Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI), released in October 2010 identifiedAfrica as the most corrupt region in the world.12. Global Integrity’s 2006 report on the countryestimates that more than half the government’s annual budget is lost to corruption each year,amounting to USD 950 million. 13 In addition, the government has held several meetings andprograms to enhance e-governance. These include the Uganda E-Government Strategy (March2004) Uganda e-Readiness Assessment (March 2004), The National ICT Policy for UgandaImplementation Framework Draft Final Report (February 2005) and East African CommunityRegional E-Government Framework (Draft) December 2005. However, there is yet to be realized aone-stop portal for the four basic models14 of e-governance, namely, Government to Customer(Citizen), Government to Employees, Government to Government and Government to Business. Theabove leads to the conclusion that the current regimes of laws and institutions established by thevarious governments of the world have not promoted participation in development. In Uganda, thecurrent regime of laws and institutions established by the government of Uganda, are not sufficientto facilitate participatory development; that is, the participation of the citizenry in development.Given the foregoing, and appreciating the centrality of participation in development by the citizens,it is imperative that the law takes a central role in obligating the government to provide informationand facilitate participation in development. Various legal jurisprudes have theorized on the sourceof government’s obligation. John Locke (1664) observed that the purpose of law is to preserve andenlarge freedom.15 The role of law, as stipulated in the contracterian theory of law, is to regulaterelations of the societal towards promoting progress and protection of property and life (Hobbes,1668; Rousseau, 1762; Locke, 1764). In so doing, the law operates to clearly identify rights andobligations and to render the correct desert to the various actions (Weber, Max, 1890). This needfor availing information as a tool to enhance participatory governance creates an obligation on theparties holding the relevant information to ensure that the people attain certain information for theiruse in development. This right to access information has been enshrined in treaties, declarations, andsoft law. Indeed, the United Nations, at its founding, recognised the freedom of information as afundamental human right (Art. 19, UDHR; Art 19, ICESCR)16 and reflected in the regional human8 See http://www.skyscrapercity.com/showthread.php?t=1137943&page=7 accessed on March 15, 20119 See Uganda: Country Brief available at http://web.worldbank.org, accessed on March 15, 201110 See TRANSPARENCY SNAPSHOT: Uganda Available at http://www.revenuewatch.org/our-work/countries/uganda/transparency-snapshot accessed on March 16, 201111 Id12 Transparency International, Corruption Perceptions Index, Transparency International, www.transparency.org.13 Available at http://www.globalintegrity.org/reports/2006/uganda/index.cfm accessed on March 17, 201114 Garson, D.G. (2006). Public Information Technology and E-Governance. Sudbury, MA: Jones and Bartlett Publishers.15 John Locke, (1664) Questions Concerning the Law of Nature, edited. Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1990.16 Article 19, Universal Declaration of Human Rights, (UDHR); Article 19 International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural RightsAdopted and opened for signature, ratification and accession by General Assembly Resolution 2200A (XXI) of 16 December 1966entry into force 3 January 1976. 2
  12. 12. rights instruments (Art. 10, ECHR; Art. 13, ACHR; Art 13, ACHPR) 17. Indeed, the UN has declaredaccess to information to be “…the touchstone of all freedoms.”18There is hence need for a comparative review of the current legislative, policy and institutionalframework in Uganda, with the aim of understanding the gaps and lacuna that creates this inertiaand to promulgate a new legal regime that will go beyond merely giving the citizen the right toaccess public information, but obligating both the government and private sector players to provide,proactively, certain types of information, which are necessary for the public to participate not onlyin governance, but also in to allow them to enhance social choice in the production of ‘life sustaining’necessities such as food, shelter, and health care and broadening their distribution; raising standardsof living; and eradicating ignorance.19 This new regime of laws will move from enhancing access toinformation to promoting popular participation through improving the freedom of people to choose20between different ways of thinking21 and their capability to choose how they want to live.22 This newregime of laws will be pillared on two twin concepts popular participation of the citizenry indevelopment through access to information.This paper analyzes the relationship between the concept of participatory development and accessto information with special the role of access to information law in facilitating the popular andhitherto missing participation of the citizenry in development. The author hypothesizes thatfacilitation of popular participation of the citizenry in the process of development and the sharing ofbenefits arising therefrom will lead to enrichment of human lives. The author opines that the currentlaws, policies and institutions regulating access to information and availability of communicationinfrastructure are not sufficient to facilitate participatory development. There is a gap inparticipation, and the role of law in development by regulating social conduct should be invoked.The governments must now be obliged to establish institutions to promote participation of thepopulace in development. The paper concludes that the government has an obligation to providelegal, institutional and policy infrastructure to ensure that the people attain certain information andhave access to communication avenues for their participation in development. 1.3 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEMDespite the centrality of the phenomena of development in the enhancement of human lives, theability of citizens to participate not only in the process of development, but also in sharing thebenefits of such development are rampant and exhibited through the low life expectancies due to,inter alia, poor medicare; high levels of ignorance; and crippling poverty levels. This is not lessenedby the fact that Uganda has an access to information law.It hence seems that the current legal regime is not sufficient to promote access to information for thepurpose of participation of the citizenry in development. It is the opinion of the author that there isneed for a new regime of legal principles that will go beyond giving the citizen the right to accesscertain public information based on access to information laws, to obligating the government toproactively make accessible certain types of information which are important and necessary to17 ; Article 10 European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, E.T.S. No. 5 (Rome, November 4,1950; entered into force September 3, 1953) (ECHR); Article 13 ACHPR; and Article 13 American Convention on Human Rights(ACHR).18 Resolution 59(1) of the UN General Assembly Adopted in its First Session in 14th December 194619 Tadaro Michael, Economics for a Developing World, Singapore, Longman Group, 2nd Edition Ed 1977.20 Supra Note 2 above21 Amartya Sen (1981) Equality of What22 Poverty and Famines: An Essay on Entitlement and Deprivation (1981) 3
  13. 13. allow the public to enhance social choice in the production of ‘life sustaining’ necessities such as food,shelter, and health care and broadening their distribution; raising standards of living; anderadicating ignorance.23 1.4 PURPOSE OF THE STUDYThe main purpose of this research paper is to analyze the effectiveness of Uganda’s access toinformation act of 2005 in promoting participatory development. 1.5 RESEARCH QUESTIONSThe primary research question this study seeks to address is whether it is possible to effectivelypromote participatory development under the current access to information regime in Uganda.Other questions which shall be addressed are as follows: 1. What is participatory development? 2. What is the role of law in enhancing participatory development? 3. What are the challenges facing participation of citizenry in development? 4. To what extent does the access to information law of 2005 promote participatory development? 5. What changes should be made to the access to information act of 2005 to enhance participatory development? 1.6 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDYThe priority and seriousness of participation of the citizenry in development cannot be gainsaid.Further, the role of information in enhancing the quality of participation is as paramount.Unfortunately, there has not a comparative analysis of the extent to which Uganda’s Access toInformation Act no. 6 of 2009, promotes participatory development. This study seeks to fill this gap.This study is also significant because Uganda, like most African countries, is facing still challenges inparticipation of the citizenry in development, and this can be attributed to the inability of the legalregime to promote effective participation. It is, therefore, imperative to interrogate the current legalregime regulating access to information and communication infrastructures and their effectiveness inpromoting participatory development. Out of this analysis, the paper shall identify gaps and lacunathat need be filled, either through legislative amendments and enactments; policy formulation andimplementation; and institutional reorganization and strengthening to advance the ideal ofparticipatory development.Further, the study seeks to relate this study to the larger, ongoing dialogue in the literature aboutinformation for development and the role of law; seeking to fill in the gaps and proposing newperspectives for the information for development discipline. The results of this study will henceprovide useful academic knowledge and resource to students, academicians, policy makers andother stakeholders who wish to understand in depth the area of study. Consequently, it will offer a23 Tadaro Michael, Economics for a Developing World, Singapore, Longman Group, 2nd Edition Ed 1977. 4
  14. 14. basis for further criticisms and development of the knowledge on the need for information fordevelopment and the role of law in the same.Further, the paper will introduce a paradigmatic shift to the current debate on access to informationby placing responsibility on the government to not only make accessible, but to publish andpopularize certain types of information which are important for the citizens to participate indevelopment. 1.7 THE RESEARCH METHODOLOGY 1.7.1 Data TypeThe research shall utilize secondary data only. The researcher shall not carry out primary datacollection, partly due to the availability of the required data, and partly due to the limitation oftime and money to carry out primary data collection and data analysis. 1.7.2 Data SourcesThe data to be collected shall be obtained through desk -top research, library research, internetresearch, legislative analyses and comparative analyses of various jurisdictions on access toinformation and participation. 1.7.3 Data AnalysisThe data will be analysed through a comparative study of the research materials so as to seek toshow the importance of access to information for the enhancement of participation in developmentprocess and the role of law in enhancing the access to information. 1.7.4 Data PresentationThe research final work shall be presented in the form of a dissertation paper. 1.7.5 Scope and Limitations of the StudyThe study shall be confined to the role of law in enhancing access to information; and the nexusbetween participatory development and access to information.The theoretical scope of the study will involve the analysis of the theories of participatory approachin development and access to information as human rights concepts.This author shall critically analyse the extent to which laws in Uganda, including ratified internationallegal instruments; the 1995 constitution; case law; and legislations, principles of law derived fromcase law; jurisprudence and soft law in international legal regime; institutions, both public andprivate; and policies, draft and actualized, in Uganda affect, either through claw-back provisions,or progressively, the strategies, policies and principles of development communication namely,facilitating participation; making information understandable and meaningful; and fostering policyacceptance-the areas of questionnaire and analysis benchmarks. 5
  15. 15. The paper is however not an exhaustive survey of the topics presented but provides a criticalanalysis to how the current legal, policy and institutional frameworks affect the access to informationand communication infrastructure which are necessary for participation of citizens in development.A further limitation in the study is the fact that the author shall only use secondary data. This ismainly because the author seeks to do a critical analysis of theories already espoused by variouswriters and hence the work is not a novel theoretical masterpiece but an attempt to seek the bestrelationship between various theories for the purposes of effective and maximum output. 1.8 REVIEW OF LITERATURE1.8.1 SummaryThis literature review aims to review the critical points of current knowledge and or methodologicalapproaches on the relationship between access to information, the law and participatorydevelopment. The literature reviews are secondary sources, and as such, do not report any new ororiginal experimental work. The goal of this literature review is to bring the reader up to date withcurrent literature on the definition of participatory development, the role of access to information inenhancing participatory development, and the role of the law in promoting access to information,for the purpose of promoting participatory development. Further, the review will establish the gap,which necessitates this research study1.8.2 IntroductionLiterature in information for development is fairly recent. This literature review seeks to share withthe reader the results of other studies and writings on the role of law in enhancing access toinformation for the purposes of participatory development, noting that Information for development(Infodev) is rapidly becoming recognised an interdisciplinary research field.241.8.3 Participatory developmentParticipationLong (1999) defines participation as a process through which stakeholders influence and sharecontrol over development initiatives and the decisions and resources which affect them.Tandon and Cordeiro (1998), building on World Bank (1994), state that participation is aninteractive process involving the continuous re-adjustment of relationships between differentstakeholders in a society in order to increase stakeholder control and influence over initiatives thataffect their lives.Gaventa (1998) posits that there are various levels and/or degrees of participation ranging fromsimple consultation to joint decision making to self-management by stakeholders themselves. The24 McNamara, Kerry S. (2003). "Inforamtion and Communication Technologies, Poverty and Development: Learning From theExperience" (PDF). World Bank, Washington D.C., USA. Retrieved on 2007-04-08. 6
  16. 16. specific degree of participation of different stakeholders is determined through a negotiationprocess, but the challenge is to increase numbers without undermining quality-involving peoplethroughout the development process in a way that empowers.DevelopmentSamuel Huntington (1963) determined development to be a linear process which every country mustgo through. In propounding the modernity theory in development, he stated that the state is acentral actor in modernizing "backward" or "underdeveloped" societies. He hence put the state atthe centre of development. This has since been refuted, however, with the new theories of bottom updevelopment, which put the stakeholders, and especially the citizens, at the centre of development.Participatory development puts the people at the centre of development.On the other hand, Professor Michael Todaro (1977) sees three objectives of development asproducing more ‘life sustaining’ necessities such as food, shelter, and health care and broadeningtheir distribution; raising standards of living and individual self esteem; and expanding economicand social choice and reducing fear. This statement puts participation of the citizenry at the centreof development.25Amartya Sen (1981) in his seminal work, Development as Freedom, States that development is theexpansion of capabilities leading to enrichment of human lives. This, he argues, is only possible if thepeople have the freedom to choose between different ways of thinking, the (cap) ability to choosehow they want to live. For the choice to be meaningful; it has to be informed, hence the need forinformation to build on the quality of participation.A critique of Sen’s views exposes a human rights concept in the freedom angle. The freedoms andentitlements of the citizenry in choosing the lifestyles they want and hence enriching their lives isbuttressed by the conception of development as a human right, which has dignity as a central themein the realization of the full potential of man; and is hence central to the Universal Declaration ofHuman Rights.26The freedoms and entitlements of the populace in the process of development are captured clearlyin the 1986 Seoul Declaration on the Right to Development,27 which stated unequivocally that theright to development is a human right; and the Second UN World Conference on Human Rights inVienna, 1993. It is also important to note that the concept of human development as a human right issupported by “social contract” philosophical pronouncements of natural rights theorists, Hobbes(1588-1679); Locke (1632-1704) and Rousseau (1712-1778), but were best exemplified byLocke’s claim during the English Revolution of 1688 that ‘…certain rights like the right to life, liberty,and property belonged to individuals as human beings because they existed in the state of naturebefore human beings entered civil society.’Professor Dudley Seers (1971) 28 argues that development is about outcomes, that is, developmentoccurs with the reduction and elimination of poverty, inequality, and unemployment within a growing25 Tadaro Michael, Economics for a Developing World, Singapore, Longman Group, 2nd Edition Ed 1977.26 Article 1 of the UDHR27 The Declaration on the Right to Development was adopted by the United Nations General Assembly, resolution 4/128 onDecember 4, 1986 (http://www.unhchr.ch/html/menu3/b/74.htm). The Universal Declaration of Human Rights was adopted by UNGeneral Assembly Resolution 217 (A) II on December 10, 1948.28 Dudley Seers, (1971) Development in a Devided World” Oxford Univeristy Press 7
  17. 17. economy. As per the doctrine of participation, development is both a process and a result, henceoutcome.Ekins (1986) argued for development from below, as the philosophy and action of learning frombelow. Development from below seeks to consult first with “those who are last” in determining thedevelopment agenda. The spinal cord of development from below is participation of the people informulating the plans, implementing them and participating in the sharing of benefits resulting fromsuch developmental processes. This view is very representative of the principle of participatorydevelopment.Participation in DevelopmentLong (1999) defines participation in development as adopting the institutional reforms andinnovations necessary to enable full and systematic incorporation of participatory methodologies sothat meaningful primary stakeholder participation becomes a regular part of a project and policydevelopment, implementation and evaluation. Accordingly hence, the concept of participation isconcerned with ensuring that the intended beneficiaries of development projects and programmesare themselves involved in the planning and execution of those projects and programmes. Thisempowers the recipients of development projects to influence and manage their own development -thereby removing any culture of dependency.1.8.4 Access to Information for Participatory DevelopmentThe issue of ensuring access to information as a pre-condition to achieve sustainable developmenthas been addressed by several meetings and international conferences, including but not limited tothe World Summit on the Information Society, 2005 World Summit, and World Social Forum(1998).29Daniel Lerner (1958) believed that that mass media could facilitate change from a traditionalsociety to a modern consumer democracy by enhancing participation of the masses indevelopment.30Talcott Parsons (1968) functional sociology lends credence to Lehre’s theory, by stating the qualitiesthat distinguished "modern" and "traditional" societies and putting education in the centre. Education,according to Parsons, is key to creating modern individuals. Technology played a key role in thistheory because it was believed that as technology was developed and introduced to lesserdeveloped countries it would spur growth.Wilbur Schramm (1980), in addressing the importance of information in development, set targets fordeveloping nations to meet: newspapers, radio sets, cinema seats and TV sets per 1,000populations. This top-down approach is widely criticized on the grounds that each nation should setits own goals. It also focuses on national media and gives little attention to local or communitymedia.29 Convention On Access To Information, Public Participation In Decision-Making And Access To Justice In Environmental Matters doneat Aarhus, Denmark, on 25 June 1998.30 Daniel Lehrer, The Passing of Traditional Societies (1958) 8
  18. 18. Everett Rogers (1976) on the other hand looked more closely at specific development projects andthe adoption of new technology and ideas among target populations. He called this the diffusion ofinnovations. Modern projects tend to continue this emphasis on specific goals in fields such asagricultural extension and health education. 31An expansion of the concept of Information for Development (Infodev) can be found in the work ofPaulo Freire (1984) who stresses dialogue with communities about their actual needs rather thanone-way communication by education as the most productive means of development. 32However, the idea of Information for Development (Infodev) has been criticized by Luis RamiroBeltan (1980) and Alfonso Gumucio Dagron (2001) 33 as tending to locate the problem in theunderdeveloped nation rather than its unequal relations with powerful economies. There is also anassumption that Western models of industrial capitalism are appropriate for all parts of the world.Many projects for Information for Development (Infodev) fail to address the real underlyingproblems in poor countries such as lack of access to land, agricultural credits and fair market pricesfor products. Such problems cannot be solved by education or communication alone but requiresfundamental social change. The author thinks differently, since the acquisition of knowledge leads tofaster social change than ignorance. 341.8.5 Participation & Access to Information: The Role of LawLaw as a Guarantor of Human FreedomsJohn Locke (1664) observed that the purpose of law is to preserve and enlarge freedom. 35 Indeed,the role of law, as stipulated in the contracterian theory of law, is to regulate relations of thesocietal towards promoting progress and protection of property and life (Hobbes; Rousseau; Locke).In so doing, the law operates to clearly identify rights and obligations and to render the correctdesert to the various actions (Weber, Max).There is hence need for availing information creates an obligation on the parties holding therelevant information to ensure that the people attain certain information for their use indevelopment.Access to Information as a RightAccess information has been enshrined in treaties, declarations, and soft law as a human right.Indeed, the United Nations, at its founding, recognised the freedom of information as a fundamentalhuman right (Art. 19, UDHR; Art 19, ICESCR)36 and reflected in the regional human rights instruments(Art. 10, ECHR; Art. 13, ACHR; Art 13. ACHPR) 37. Indeed, the UN has declared access to information31 Everett Rogers, "Communication and Development: The Passing of A Dominant Paradigm," Communication Research 3, 2, (1976):213-40.32 Paulo Frerre, Pedagogy of the Oppressed, 198433 Alfonso Gumucio Dagron, Making Waves: Stories of Participatory Communication for Social Change, 2001, the RockefellerFoundation.34 Luis Ramiro Beltran, "A Farewell to Aristotle: Horizontal Communication," Communication 5 (1980), 5-4135 John Locke, (1664) Questions Concerning the Law of Nature, edited. Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1990.36 Article 19, Universal Declaration of Human Rights, (UDHR); Article 19 International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural RightsAdopted and opened for signature, ratification and accession by General Assembly Resolution 2200A (XXI) of 16 December 1966entry into force 3 January 1976. 9
  19. 19. to be “…the touchstone of all freedoms.”38 The above means that the government is obliged, as dutybearers, to fulfill, protect and promote access to information as a human right, to the right holders,being the citizenry.ICJ (K) (2009) reported that the citizenry must be informed for the realization of a just, free andequitable society where the rule of law is observed, human rights protected and democracyenhanced.39 The author agrees totally that for the participation of the citizens to be meaningful, theyneed to be informed, so that they engage in informed participation.From the foregoing, the freedom of information is widely recognised as an important component ofhuman rights which is capable of fulfilling important roles in society and as an underpinning ofdemocracy.1.8.6 Conclusion: The Gap-The Situation in UgandaThe constitution of Uganda in article 41 provides for the access to information by citizens. This is alsoprovided for by the access to information act of 2005. 40 Uganda has also established variousoffices, both by acts of parliament and administrative offices, which seek to enhance the access toinformation by the citizenry, including the office of the ombudsman. There is also established thecommission for access to information, and the office of the ombudsman, for the purposes of lodgingcomplaints, not to mention the law courts. However, access to information for the purposes ofdevelopment has not been effected.However, all the regimes of laws, policies and institutions, and judicial pronouncements, there lacks aclear guideline that allows the citizens to participate in development initiatives or that obligates thegovernment to give certain types of information to the societal for their use in making life choicesand enhancing the quality of their lives. This paper looks at the gaps and offers recommendations. 1.9 CHAPTER BREAKDOWNThis study is undertaken in five chapters. Each chapter will aim at answering one or more of theresearch questions. Chapter one serves as the introduction, and provides the general backgroundand framework for the study. Chapter two is an incisive analysis of the concepts of participatorydevelopment generally, but with specific reference to Uganda. Chapter three is dedicated to an in-depth examination of the international and regional standards and human rights framework forpromoting participatory development. Chapter four focuses on Uganda’s legal and policyframework on participatory development. Chapter five focuses on Uganda’s Access to InformationAct No. 6 of 2005 with reference to its ability to promote participatory development in Uganda.Chapter six is the summary of findings, conclusion and recommendations of the study.37 ; Article 10 European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, E.T.S. No. 5 (Rome, November 4,1950; entered into force September 3, 1953) (ECHR); Article 13 ACHPR; and Article 13 American Convention on Human Rights(ACHR).38 Resolution 59(1) of the UN General Assembly Adopted in its First Session in 14th December 194639 ICJ (k) Publication, Freedom of Access to Information in Kenya: Analysis of Access to Information Act40 Cap 534 laws of Uganda 10
  20. 20. -Chapter Two- PARTICIPATORY DEVELOPMENT 2.0 CHAPTER SUMMARYThis chapter is an incisive analysis of the concept of participatory development generally, but withspecific reference to its application in Uganda. 2.1 PARTICIPATORY DEVELOPMENT2.1.1 Defining ParticipationParticipation is a process through which stakeholders influence and exercise control overdevelopment initiatives and the decisions and resources which affect them (World Bank 1996). It isan interactive process involving the continuous re-adjustment of relationships between differentstakeholders in a society in order to increase stakeholder control and influence over initiatives thataffect their lives (Tandon and Cordeiro 1998). The United Nations Research Institute for SocialDevelopment (UNRISD)s Popular Participation Program, (1996) defined participation as "theorganized effort to increase control over resources and regulative institutions in given socialsituations on the part of groups or movements hitherto excluded from such control".41 Although rathergeneral, this definition captures the wider meaning of the participation concept and stresses itsempowerment, control and decision-making aspects. The World Banks Learning Group on PopularParticipation defined popular participation as "a process by which people, especiallydisadvantaged people, influence decisions that affect them".42 Citizen participation is the directways in which citizens influence and exercise control in governance’ (Gaventa and Valderrama 1999).2.1.2 Levels and Dimensions of ParticipationThere are various levels and/or degrees of participation ranging from simple consultation to jointdecision making to self-management by stakeholders themselves. The specific degree ofparticipation of different stakeholders is determined through a negotiation process, but thechallenge is to increase numbers without undermining quality-involving people throughout thedevelopment process in a way that empowers (Gaventa 1998).2.1.3 Why Participation?There are various benefits of participation, as herein below listed. a) Tying Programs to PeopleCitizen participation is a desired and necessary part of community development activities. AsSpiegel notes, "Citizen Participation is the process that can meaningfully tie programs to people"(1968). Citizen participation in community decision-making can be traced as far back as PlatosRepublic. Platos concepts of freedom of speech, assembly, voting, and equal representation haveevolved through the years to form basic pillars upon which the United States was established. Citizen41 UNRISD (1996). Their choice or yours: Global forces or Local voices? Discussion Paper No.79.42 World Bank (1995), World Bank Participation Sourcebook, Environment Department Papers. Participation Series Washington D.C.World Bank. 11
  21. 21. participation is the essence of democracy. Heberlein (1976) notes that public involvement results inbetter decisions. b) Check & BalanceCitizen participation in community affairs serves to check and balance political activities.Participation allows fuller access to benefits of a democratic society (Wade 1989). Partisan politicalfavors, pork barreling, and nepotism are negative examples of unchecked political behavior. Across section of citizen participation in the decision-making process reduces the likelihood ofcommunity leaders making self-serving decisions. c) DignityCahn and Camper (1968) suggest that merely knowing that one can participate promotes dignityand self-sufficiency within the individual. It taps the energies and resources of individual citizenswithin the community and provides a source of special insight, information, knowledge, andexperience, which contributes to the soundness of community solutions. The result is an emphasis onproblem solving to eliminate deficiencies in the community (Christensen & Robinson 1980). d) Program LegitimacyCook (1975) notes that citizen participation can legitimize a program, its plans, actions, andleadership. To legitimize can often mean the difference between success and failure of communityefforts. Unsupported leaders often become discouraged and drop activities that are potentiallybeneficial to community residents. Voluntary participation can also reduce the cost for personnelneeded to carry out many of the duties associated with community action. Without this support,scores of worthwhile projects would never be achieved in many communities. e) Equitable Resource AllocationLong (1999) defines participation as a process through which stakeholders influence and sharecontrol over development initiatives and the decisions and resources which affect them. This leads toequitable resource allocation, as per the needs of the stakeholders. f) Encouraging Bottom Up ProcessTandon and Cordeiro (1998), building on World Bank (1994), state that participation is aninteractive process involving the continuous re-adjustment of relationships between differentstakeholders in a society in order to increase stakeholder control and influence over initiatives thataffect their lives. This presupposes a bottom up process, which is the current trend in developmentalparadigms.2.1.4 Conditions of Citizen Participation/ Facilitating Citizen ParticipationPeople become involved in community affairs only when certain conditions are present (Wade1989, Christensen and Robinson 1980). Whereas the conditions to be met are various, the two basicconditions are the presence of structures and institutions for participation; and the presence ofknowledge to make citizens use the structures. 12
  22. 22. a) Institutional StructureCitizen participation is chiefly facilitated with an appropriate organizational structure. Sills (1966)notes that there is the need for organizational structures appropriate for citizen participation. Thesemust be hinged on the law, and supported by policy. b) Information (Better Knowledge)People are reluctant to participate in community activity when they do not have enough informationto act responsibly. If citizens do not know how to act, they will avoid participation as long aspossible or until they have what they believe to be sufficient information.43 2.2 DEVELOPMENT AS PARTICIPATIONAs noted earlier, development is a complex multi-dimensional concept based on the expansion ofcapabilities leading to enrichment of humans lives through producing ‘life sustaining’ necessities andenhancing social choice (Dudley Seers, 1971).44 However, the expansion of capabilities; productionof necessities; and the enhancement of social choice are only possible if the people have thefreedom and capacity to choose how they want to live (Amartya Sen, 1999).45This choice is exercised through participation in development. Participation in development, alsoreferred to as participatory development, involves both taking part in deciding what developmentprojects to be implemented, and sharing the benefits accruing from the development project (Tandonand Cordeiro, 1998). Through participatory development, the citizens can influence and sharecontrol over development initiatives, and over the decisions and resources that affect their lives46.For effective participation, the citizens must be capacitated through information so as to makeinformed choices. 47 In Development as Freedom, Sen argued that individuals act in their best interestwhenever they have the choice, that is, when they possess adequate knowledge.48 Indeed, for trulyparticipatory development to take place anywhere in a modern nation state, the people must haveaccess to information. Information ensures public awareness from which people can make informedchoices, such as assessment of political and economic regimes. Confucius warned long ago that, "Thepeople may be made to follow the course of action; but they may not be made to understand it." Accessto information makes people understand the course of action.From the foregoing, true development only subsists in an environment of participation; hence,development is only development properly so called when it is participatory.43 Id44 Dudley Seers. (1971) Development in a Devided World” Oxford Univeristy Press45 Amartya Sen Development as Freedom Oxford University Press 199946 Framework for Mainstreaming Participatory Development Processes into Bank Operations, ADB. 199647 Pillar 2, AHHRIS Convention, Public Particiaption48 A. Sen, Development as Freedom (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1999). 13
  23. 23. 2.3 DEFINING PARTICIPATORY DEVELOPMENTParticipatory development is also referred to as Participation in Development49. Long (1999) definesparticipation in development as adopting the institutional reforms and innovations necessary toenable full and systematic incorporation of participatory methodologies so that meaningful primarystakeholder participation becomes a regular part of a project and policy development,implementation and evaluation. Accordingly hence, the concept of participation is concerned withensuring that the intended beneficiaries of development projects and programmes are themselvesinvolved in the planning and execution of those projects and programmes. This empowers therecipients of development projects to influence and manage their own development - therebyremoving any culture of dependency. There are many different public participation mechanisms,although these often share common features (for a list over 100 mechanisms, and a typology ofmechanisms, see Rowe and Frewer, 2005).502.3.1 The Rise of Participatory DevelopmentParticipatory development is not a recent phenomenon. Democratic forms of decision-making haveexisted in most cultures including religious communities and political dissident movements.Participatory principles were central to the international cooperative movement, many nationalistand some socialist movements (Tandon, 1998). In the 1950s and 1960s postcolonial and postrevolutionary governments employed a wide range of measures at local and community level inattempts to mobilize their populations for national development.51In the 1970s and 1980s there was widespread institutionalization of the rhetoric of participatorydevelopment in response to evidence of the failure of large numbers of expensive large-scale, top-down projects in both capitalist and socialist countries. In the 1980s this emphasis on participatorydevelopment was also part of the move to roll back the state and to put greater emphasis on non-governmental organizations as providers of services previously supplied by the state(Sriskandarajah et al, 1991).By the end of the 1980s participatory development had become an established umbrella term for anew style of development. There is a plethora of manuals on techniques for participatorydevelopment produced by a wide range of organizations. Most international donor agencies haveofficial statements about the need for beneficiary participation and project guidelines forparticipatory projects (Long, 1999)2.3.2 Why Participatory Development?Participatory development has been promoted on the basis of a number of arguments: a) Rights ArgumentThe International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR)52, in article 1 recognizesthe right of all peoples to self-determination, including the right to "freely determine their political49 Id50 Rowe, G. and Frewer, L.J. (2005) A typology of public engagement mechanisms, Science, Technology, & Human Values, 30 (2),251-290.51 id52 Adopted by the United Nations General Assembly on December 16, 1966, and in force from January 3, 1976. 14
  24. 24. status"53, right participate effectively in society (Articles 13 and 14); and right to participation incultural life (Article 15)The Universal Declaration of Human Rights, 54UDHR guarantees the right to participate in cultural lifeand to enjoy the benefits of social progress in article 27. Article 21 outlines the right to participatein government and in free elections.Participation, and particularly and explicitly participation of the poorest and most vulnerableparticipants is a human right and an inherent and indivisible component of pro-poor developmentstrategies and empowerment. Long (1999) argues that participation in development leads to theinvolvement of the primary stakeholders in the development process. Such involvement, the authorposits, enhances ownership, and sustainability of the development programs.The UN System Network on Rural Development and Food Security55 describes participation as one ofthe ends as well as one of the means of development. Participation is hence useful in all the stages ofdevelopment program, right from conceptualization, planning, implementation, monitoring andevaluation.Article 1 of the Convention on Access to Information, Public Participation in Decision-Making andAccess to Justice in Environmental Matters56 states that, “In order to contribute to the protection of the right of every person of present and future generations to live in an environment adequate to his or her health and well-being, each Party shall guarantee the rights of access to information, public participation in decision-making, and access to justice in environmental matters in accordance with the provisions of this Convention.”Further, Article 3 of the same convention provides that, “such participation shall lead to mobilization of the community and their transformation into prefects of their development.“In Africa, the African countries have made major strides in democratizing governance since the 1990Arusha Conference, which produced the African Charter for Popular Participation in Development andTransformation57. The Arusha document was a milestone as it identified the lack of popularparticipation in development as central to the dismal state of African economies and cause ofpolitical instability and social calamity. Popular participation is both a means and an end. Popularparticipation is recognized in the document as a fundamental right of the people to fully andeffectively participate in the determination of the decisions which affect their lives at all levels andat all times.Further, African [Banjul] Charter on Human and Peoples Rights 58 ACHPR in article 13(1) providesthat every citizen shall have the right to participate freely in the government of his country, eitherdirectly or through freely chosen representatives in accordance with the provisions of the law.53 ICESCR, Article 1.254 Adopted in 194855 Available at www.rdfs.net/ accessed on June 14th 201156 Adopted At Aarhus, Denmark, on 25 June 199857 adopted in February 1990 at the "International Conference on Popular Participation in the Recovery and Development Process inAfrica", Arusha, Tanzania58 Adopted June 27, 1981, OAU Doc. CAB/LEG/67/3 rev. 5, 21 I.L.M. 58 (1982), entered into force Oct. 21, 1986 15
  25. 25. A critical analysis of the above international human rights documents exposes 5 (five) core principlesfor effective citizens’ participation, namely, mass literacy; democratization; freedom of association,political accountability of leadership; and decentralization of decision-making processes andinstitutions. b) Effectiveness ArgumentParticipation of the main stakeholders increases the accuracy of information and relevance to therealities of peoples lives and policy decision and implementation processes. Public participation isviewed as a tool, intended to inform planning, organizing or funding of activities. Publicparticipation may also be used to measure attainable objectives, evaluate impact, and identifylessons for future practice.59 The public can also better assess government performance and supportthe oversight of decision making if they are aware of the criteria that are to be applied by thegovernment agencies making the decisions. At a minimum, the public should know60: i. How the funding priorities were decided; ii. How they can input; iii. How plans are made at community level; iv. How policy consultations are run, who is involved when the policy decisions are made and what arguments exist for and against various policies; v. How government activities are monitored and how they can get involved; c) Cost-Efficiency ArgumentInvolvement of the main stakeholders increases ownership of the development process, better use ofresources and is likely to enable mobilisation of local resources to augment or even substitute thosefrom outside. Much of the failure of the strategies of development is due to the fact that most ofthem were designed in closed environment. If governments were to be obligated to provideinformation, then public can be empowered to more meaningfully determine their owndevelopmental destines. They can assess the development strategies they want, the project theyneed and if they are suppressed, they can press for changes to put the development back on track. d) Process ArgumentThe participatory process, through building skills, capacities and networks is a contribution in itself topro-poor development, civil society and empowerment. The role of public participation in economicand human development was enshrined in the 1990 African Charter for Popular Participation inDevelopment and Transformation. 61 Further, improved access to information and public participationin decision-making enhance the quality and the implementation of decisions, contribute to publicawareness of environmental issues, give the public the opportunity to express its concerns andenable public authorities to take due account of such concerns. This further presupposes that the59 Davies, A. (2001). ‘What silence knows – planning, public participation and environmental values’, Environmental Values, 10: 77–102.60 Id61 Adopted in February 1990 at the "International Conference on Popular Participation in the Recovery and Development Process inAfrica", Arusha, Tanzania, and available at http://apic.igc.org/african-initiatives/chartall.htm accessed on June 11, 2011 16
  26. 26. public is aware of the procedures for participation in decision-making and they have free access tothem and know how to use them.2.3.3 Criticisms of Participatory DevelopmentDespite the various benefits of participatory development, there are various critiques to the conceptas below: a) Costly & SlowWhen compared with traditional forms of development, Participatory Development (PD) issometimes criticized for being costly and slow. A project may take longer if one has to engage,work and come to a consensus with local communities, than if one did not have to do these things. 62PD may also have higher start up costs than traditional development. b) Low CoverageIn addition, PD is criticized for reaching a smaller population than traditional development.Community dialogue and augmentation may initially involve only a few individuals, whereasdropped food aid reaches hundreds of people.63 c) MarginalizationCritics also argue that in trying to give voice to communities, development agencies may connectonly with elite members of a group, thereby re-enforcing local inequalities. They hence treat allpeople in communities the same, 64 hence not addressing such issues as gender power imbalances65 and hence it fails to adequately address other inequalities such as class66. PD projects have alsobeen accused of enabling tokenism, where a few “hand-picked” local voices are allowed to speak asa “rubber stamp to prove...participatory credentials”.67 This view suggests that organizations onlyinclude local voices to improve their image, without really seeking to engage the population withwhich they are working. Further, there are arguments that outsiders may further reinforce existinginequalities because of their ignorance of local inequalities and/or their dependence on thesepower structures to gain access to communities. Reference to cultural-sensitivity and the need forcommunity participation are often cited as reasons for not addressing gender issues without evenconsulting women or men about gender concerns they may have.A response to the above criticisms would be that the institution implementing the PD projects must beengendered and be well representative.62 Jennings, R. (2000). ‘Participatory Development as New Paradigm: The Transition of Development Professionalism’. CommunityBased Reintegration and Rehabilitation in Post-Conflict Settings Conference. pp 4.63 Id64 Mohan, G. (2008). ‘Participatory Development’. The Companion to Development Studies. Hodder Education. pp 46.65 Mayoux, L. (1995) ‘Beyond Naivety: Women, Gender Inequality and Participatory Development.” Institute of Social Studies. pp242.66 Mohan, G. (2007) “Participatory Development: From Epistemological Reversals to Active Citizenship”. Geography Compass. pp78467 Mohan, G. (2008). ‘Participatory Development’. The Companion to Development Studies. Hodder Education. pp 48 17
  27. 27. 2.4 PARTICIPATORY DEVELOPMENT IN UGANDAUganda as a country has adopted various approaches for participatory development at variouslevels. A few are sampled hereinunder.2.4.1 The Participatory Development (PDM) ProgrammeThe Participatory Development Programme is Government’s deliberate effort to build mutual trustand therefore willingness of the Local Authorities to respect and respond to decisions taken andneeds identified through citizen’s participatory processes. It is guided by principles of knowledgeand awareness of the Government policies and priorities by the citizenry, self reliance, openness,inclusiveness, transparency and both upward and downward accountability. The Programme isdesigned to strengthen Local Government institutions to deepen decentralization to the grassroots.Ministry of Local Government and Local Governments implement it with the support of UNDP,Uganda.The programme aims at assisting Government to implement the above legal provisions intended toempower the local population to effectively participate in planning and management ofdevelopment programmes which impact on them directly. It also aims at ensuring that peoples’visions and priorities, right from the village and cell level, are used as building blocks ofdevelopment plans of higher-level councils and Governments. Activities under the PDM programmerevolve around supporting local governments to involve civil society in decision making anddevelopment management. This involves capacity enhancement of the Political and TechnicalLeadership to support and embrace participatory development management as a working modalityin their Local Governments.2.4.2 Participatory Budgeting from Uganda FieldworkThere is a strong legal, political and institutional framework to support participatory budgeting activities in Uganda. The local governments are generally following the process of participatory budgeting as outlined in the General Guide to the LocalBudget Process. One area of concern is the extent to which the process is truly inclusive and participatory. But holding them during a busier season might have adversely impacted attendance. For example, a budget conference during the working hours might preclude a business person from attending due to his occupational duties whle holding it in the evening might preclude a housewife from attending due to her household duties. Additionally, the team established that when participants do attend, they do not always exercise their voice. With multiple stakeholder groups in the audience, one group can tend to dominate discussion. For example, in the study, both community members and local government officials cited technical budgeting knowledge as a hindrance to implementing partiipatory budgeting. However, budgeting is complicated and that inadequate understanding of the topic could impact the process bothon the effectiveness of the mechanism and the process of participation in its own right. Additionally, it is likely that the lackof capacity of both technical staff and citizen participants adversely impacts the extent to which articipatory budgeting occurs in Uganda. Such an argument indicates that in some cases local level officials themselves do not understand what participatory processestruly mean, let alone have the capacity to facilitate them. In this sense, one can argue that there is no true participation in these forums,as technical staff neither facilitated conversation nor probed citizens to uncover their true priorities. 18
  28. 28. 2.4.3 Mechanism for Strengthening Accountability in Local GovernanceUganda also has periodic elections which have a tendency of disciplining the councillors to makepolicies that serve the needs of those who elect them. However, there are other mechanisms that canbe used to hold the local governments accountable. First is the right to recall non-performingrepresentatives. The Ugandan law is explicit on this. Also, citizens can petition against wrong acts.This element can be strong if there is a strong civil society. Further, the right to information is astrong tool for accountability. The Ugandan local government laws provide for the publication offinances in local newspapers circulating in the area (GoK 1998: 127). Uganda, the UniversalPrimary Education fund figures are displayed on school notice boards for citizens to see and takeaction if they think there is some foul play. In addition, Ugandan local governments hold budgetconferences that contribute to improving the accountability of representatives. Again, there is theprovision for citizen’s right to information, a window that can be used by individuals and civil societyto monitor what the local government is doing. The Uganda Debt Network, an NGO based inKampala is monitoring the use of Universal Primary Education funds. This is helping improveaccountability.2.4.4 Local Development PlanningOne of the important outcomes of participatory development based on the LC system is localdevelopment planning. All districts are now expected to compile respective District DevelopmentPlan (DDP) reflecting the needs of the grassroots people. However, the level of popularparticipation in planning varies considerably from one district to another. Citizens’ participation inUganda has been skewed towards politics. Adults are allowed, and the majority actually votes theirleaders into office. Also the media is predominantly preoccupied with political debates. Sometimessuch debates influence the decision-making processes of Local Authorities. Citizens’ participation indecision making on development matters that affect them has generally been passive. This is basedon the real or perceived failure of Governments, Central or Local to deliver expected services to thecitizens. This seems to be the real or apparent reason why local people participate more in politicsthan in development planning and implementation. People tend to look for leaders who can deliverhence the explanation of the high turnover of political leaders. Attempts to solicit peoples’involvement take the form of occasional one-time consultations, which although sometimes taken tobe a proxy for participatory practice, only enable the local authorities to exercise their right to beheard. They are supply focused, not inclusive because they are dominated by the elite and areoften marred by mistrust and negative attitudes of both the upstream technocrats and thecommunities themselves. They therefore don’t allow for peoples’ demands to influence policy makingin Local Governments. Consequently peoples’ needs are not accurately identified to inform policydecision-making processes which results into incidences of resentment and occasionallydemonstrations over development decisions taken by local authorities. Often this calls for tirelessand at times costly interventions to solicit peoples’ support of decisions already taken. Occasionallythe decisions are painfully reversed. 19
  29. 29. 2.5 CHALLENGES AND LESSONS FOR PARTICIPATORY DEVELOPMENTThe challenges and risks associated with participatory development planning include: a) Time and MoneyThe participatory techniques themselves are as such inexpensive to use. However, the overallplanning process can require a considerable staff time and resources on the part of the governmentor development agency, especially if it involves extensive preparatory activities like informationcampaigns and training of facilitators, and the convening of large multi-stakeholder meetings. Forlocal stakeholders, their participation can have significant costs in terms of their time and effort,particularly if they need to forego any wages or sacrifice time spent on subsistence activities. b) Resistance and ManipulationSome groups or individuals involved in the participatory planning process may find it difficult toaccept the collaborative decision-making approach. For example the government decision-makersmay feel threatened that their responsibilities and power are being undermined and may becomeobstacles to the process (et al. 2004). Other stakeholders may try and manipulate the process topush their own agendas. c) Bypassing Existing Planning StructuresIf participatory approaches are not carefully integrated into formal planning frameworks, they canundermine these existing structures thereby risking conflict and a poor receptivity of the outputs ofthe participatory planning on the part of public authorities. d) Scaling–Up RisksThe success of participatory approaches relies on their adaptability to different situations.Therefore, when governments or development agencies attempt to replicate and standardize theuse of such approaches on a large scale, there is a risk that the participatory element will becomenegligible or even meaningless. 2.6 CASE STUDIES2.6.1 Rural Community and Sub-District-Level Planning In IndonesiaThe Indonesian government launched the Kecamatan (Sub-district) Development Program (KDP) in1998 as a response to a severe economic crisis. The aim of the program which ended in 2008 hasbeen to alleviate poverty and improve local-level governance by: providing poor communities withthe financial and organizational resources to decide how to improve their livelihoods; buildappropriate infrastructure; provide health care and education services; and build effective localgovernment and community institutions. The World Bank-funded program provided flexible grants,ranging from US$50,000 to US$150,000 per sub-district which were channeled straight to thecommunities to finance activities that villagers defined as the most important. In addition, the 20
  30. 30. program set aside funds for the thousands of participating villages specifically for participatoryplanning at the sub-village, village and sub-district levels. Villagers elected facilitators, a man anda woman, who assisted with the socialization and planning process. The facilitators held groupmeetings, including separate women’s meetings to discuss the needs of the village and theirdevelopment priorities. Social and technical consultants were available to help with the socialization,planning and implementation processes. For the sub-district level planning, an inter-village forumcomposed of elected village representatives made the final decisions on project funding based onproposals that came from the communities. KDP community forums then selected members to be partof an implementation team to manage the projects, assisted by technical facilitators provided by theprogram. While the KDP suffered from numerous shortcomings, it is nonetheless an impressiveexample of allowing ordinary citizens to plan and fund what development they want to see in theircommunities.2.6.2 Municipal Rural Development Planning In BrazilThe Centre for Alternative Technologies (CTA), a Brazilian NGO, has devised a participatoryprocess to develop municipal rural development plans (MRDP) in three municipalities as a means tosupport pro-poor local development and involved contacting communities and negotiations andnetworking between partners to agree on the guiding principles for the local development processand each partner’s role; a community planning phase that involved a series of group meetings andfamily interviews in every community and an initial analysis of the key issues emerging; and a finalstage that included providing feedback to the communities, deepening the analysis of the issuesidentified by the communities, and the identification and prioritization of proposals to address someof these issues. The PRAs lasted several months and concluded with the process and results beingdocumented in a MRDP that then became the official agreement between civil society organizationsand the municipal council. In order to ensure implementation of the plan, CTA and its partnersestablished a municipal council for rural development (MCRD), making use of the national legislationthat encouraged such bodies. The council is responsible for implementing the plan and also providesa forum where the municipal policies and proposals for rural investment are discussed. The council iscomposed of representatives from the town council, agricultural/forestry extension and researchservices, CTA, rural workers’ unions, women’s groups and smallholder cooperatives.2.6.3 Peri-Urban Community-Level Planning In IndiaIn 2001, an agricultural university in the Hubli–Dharwad twin city region of India partnered withinternational and local NGOs as well as community-based organizations to run a one-yearparticipatory action planning project (PAPP). This project operated in five peri-urban villages thatwere selected based on their potential to show how trends in peri-urban areas could affect naturalresources and local livelihoods. Factors such as proximity to the city, presence of immigrantpopulations, and incidence of alcoholism, gambling and other urban influences, were taken intoaccount. The early stages of the participatory planning process involved initial rapport-buildingactivities with the communities using methods like using street plays and then PRA exercises, includinggroup discussions with various sections of the communities to facilitate a village-based analysis of theproblems faced by different groups and the identification of community representatives toparticipate in all future events. A diagnostic workshop was then held where the communityrepresentatives presented the findings of their analyses and community, government and NGOrepresentatives collaboratively identified possible solutions. Finally, village representatives designed 21
  31. 31. and presented their own action plans and logical frameworks viz. the format of the action plans, intheir communities. 2.7 CONCLUSIONParticipatory Development seeks to engage local populations in development projects. It is animportant part of the "basic needs approach" to development68 as it seeks “to give the poor a partin initiatives designed for their benefit” in the hopes that development projects will be moresustainable and successful if local populations are engaged in the development process. However, itis until it is studied in the context of human rights that it becomes evident that that participation mustbe appreciated by all government planning agencies.68 Cornwall, A. (2002)Beneficiary, Consumer, Citizen: Perspectives on Participation for Poverty Reduction. ‘Idaa Studies, pp 11. 22
  32. 32. -Chapter Three- PROMOTING PARTICIPATORY DEVELOPMENT AS A HUMAN RIGHT 3.0 SUMMARYThis chapter is dedicated to an in-depth examination of the international and regional standardsand human rights framework for promoting participatory development.3.1 PARTICIPATORY DEVELOPMENT AS HUMAN RIGHTThe framing of participatory development as a right has the ultimate goal of describing thesociopolitical process of legalization for a new generation of human rights. The concept ofparticipatory development being viewed as a human right is based on the two components ofparticipation and development, being viewed as rights, in their own right.3.1.1 ParticipationParticipation is a human rights principle, and as such, it is not a gift or privilege bestowed bygovernment.69 In other words, it is a right for all citizens – especially the most marginalized andvulnerable in society. “[t]here is nothing more basic to the development process than participation,”70“Effective participation” is that which helps ensure efficiency and economic growth on the one hand,and equity and social justice on the other.71Article 12 of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child72 lays down the principle and purpose ofmeaningful participation of children and young people, and Article 7 of CEDAW on women’s rights.The Millennium Declaration73 in Article 25 reaffirms the commitment to work collectively for moreinclusive political processes, allowing genuine participation by all citizens (and in this case, childrenand young people included) in all countries.The World Fit for Children in para 32 (i) adopted at the UN General Assembly Special Session onChildren made a strong commitment towards increasing participation of children.As noted above, participation is a non-negotiable right. Citizens whose rights are not realized haveclaims (as “claim-holders”) against those whose responsibility it is to act on it (as “duty-bearers”) –viz, communities, civil society organizations, governments, etc.A human rights approach to participation implies five key roles for citizens: a) identifying unfulfilled rights and acting on them b) claiming of rights c) identifying capacity gaps in rights not realized and duties not performed d) participating in the implementation of solutions69 See UDHR, Art 1.70 J. Brian Atwood, U.S. Agency for Int’l Dev., Statement of Principles on ParticipatoryDevelopment (1993), http://pdf.usaid.gov/pdf_docs/PNACF577.pdf.71 id72 Adopted and opened for signature, ratification and accession by General Assembly resolution 44/25 of 20 November 198973 UNGA R 55/2 23
  33. 33. e) involving in monitoring, evaluating and reporting3.1.2 Participation in the Context of the UN Programming ProcessParticipation is also important for guaranteeing developmental programmes – a principle that hasbeen adopted as a “common understanding” within the UN system.Participation is fundamental to human-rights based approach to programming and it is laid down asone of the five basic elements of the HRBA (others include: express linkage to rights, accountability,equality and non-discrimination, and empowerment).In the Common Understanding Document74 it is stated that “development cooperation contributes tothe development of the capacities of duty bearers’ to meet their obligations and/or of ‘right holders’to claim their rights”.Capacities for human rights promotion and protection can be only acquired by rights-holdersthrough the process of their active participation in all parts of development programming.Participation is central to the developmental approach as the development is “a process ofexpanding the real freedoms that people enjoy”. The goal of development is to be free and beable to choose and live the sort of life one wants to live. A community can be considered developedto the extent that it ensures that its entire people are in a position to participate and shape a life ofdignity.Participation is also important for personal development. It is only through participation that humansdevelop self-confidence and skills, build competencies, form aspirations, gain confidence and attainvaluable resources. Learning - through experience – to make informed decisions, to develop stablerelationships and to take on the responsibilities of democratic citizenship, is an important componentof participation.Participation is an essential component of successful and lasting development. Therefore, the right todevelopment is fulfilled through popular participation as echoed in the Arusha Declaration:In our view, popular participation is both a means and an end. As an instrument of development,popular participation provides the driving force for collective commitment for the determination ofpeople-based development processes and willingness by the people to undertake sacrifices and expandtheir social energies for its execution. As an end in itself, popular participation is the fundamental rightof the people to fully participate effectively in the determination of the decision which affect their livesat all levels and at all times.75The Organization of African Unity (O.A.U) is determined to promote and protect human andpeoples’ rights especially the right of people to freely participate, by its affirmation in the AfricanCharter on Human and Peoples’ Rights that: “Every citizen has the right to participate freely in thegovernment of his or her country, either directly or through freely chosen representatives in accordancewith the provision of the law (Article 13.1).”7475 http://www.crvp.org/book/Series02/II-8/chapter_ix.htm#_edn 24
  34. 34. Further, the role of public participation in economic and human development was enshrined in the1990 African Charter for Popular Participation in Development and Transformation. 76 This is alandmark document in promoting right to participatory development.Here every African country is supposed to enact relevant laws in this respect. Member states of theO. A. U are bound to affirm the right to development and encourage the right to participation intheir different countries. Popular participation, however, depends on the nature of the state and theability of government to respond to popular demands. This is possible where the government allowsthe people freedom in decision making. 3.2 DEVELOPMENT AS A HUMAN RIGHT3.2.1 Legal Basis of the Right!The conception of right is of fundamental import in law because of the enforceability of particularrights. Human rights are classified into three categories as per the trio-classification of rights byVasak.77 The first generation rights relate to the civil and political rights, guaranteed by the ICCPR;the second generations of rights relate to the social, economic and cultural rights, guaranteed by theICESCR; and the third category of rights involves the collective rights and includes inter alia the rightto development and the right to a healthy living and environment.The modern poverty reduction and development programmes often have dignity as a central theme.Dignity is also a central theme of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the very first article ofwhich states that:"All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights.”78The concept of dignity in development has been extensively explored by many, and related to allof the development sectors. For example, in Development with Dignity79 Amit Bhaduri argues that fullemployment with dignity for all is both important and possible in India, while the UN MillenniumProjects task force on Water and Sanitation links the sector directly to dignity in the report Health,Dignity and Development: What will it take?80.The Asian Human Rights Commission released a statement claiming that "Human dignity is the truemeasure of human development."81The UN Charter states in its preamble that:“...mankind thirsts for peace and development and it is in the interests of mankind that international lawdirects the actions of states by imposing on them the duty to cooperate...”The Universal Declaration reflected the immediate post-war consensus about human rights based onwhat President Roosevelt described as four freedoms—including the freedom from want—which he76 Adopted in February 1990 at the "International Conference on Popular Participation in the Recovery and Development Process inAfrica", Arusha, Tanzania, and available at http://apic.igc.org/african-initiatives/chartall.htm accessed on June 11, 201177 Vasak Karel, a 30 years struggle, UNESCO Corner (1977) p. 9678 Article 1 UDHR79 Amit Bhaduri, (2005) Development with Dignity HB, Print Price: 200.00. Author: ISBN: 81-237-4597-4. Publication: 30-11-200580 Goal 1 of the United Nation Millennium Development Goals81 Communiqué issue on on July 27, 2006 25

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