The heart of the Government’s national development strategy is in the alignment between the Cabinet, the policy priorities, and the budget, which must overcome the fragmentation of the past through a holistic process of turning policies into expenditure. The machinery for achieving this is now being put in place, having been approved by decision-makers of the National Unity Government.
1. Political leaders set national goals: The President, CEO, and Cabinet will set the country’s overall development objectives through a consultative Cabinet process.
2. Inter-ministerial Cabinet Councils formulate and manage development policy and programming and negotiate competing budget proposals. Cabinet-level councils have been established to set development priorities, oversee policymaking, eliminate fragmentation of mandates, monitor progress and facilitate measures for development in their respective sectors. The Councils will be responsible for overseeing preparation and implementation of national priority programs in their sectors. The High Economic Council serves as the umbrella forum for making final decisions on economic policy and budgetary allocations.
3. National Priority Programs (NPPs) are outcome focused thematic programs that over time will guide ministries towards collective problem solving. Most NPP’s involve more than one ministry. Inter-ministerial working groups have been formed to synchronize timetables, budgets, and shared resources as appropriate.
All NPPs share a number of common principles. Investment proposals under an NPP umbrella should be national in scope, with careful attention to ensuring geographical and ethnic balance. All NPPs should be able to articulate their approach to reducing poverty and supporting government policies on gender. All NPPs should be technically sound and follow the government’s new rules on incorporating accurate forward cost estimates for their operations and maintenance. And all NPPs will have to negotiate their funding within their Development Council prior to a final review by the government’s High Economic Council, after which they can be entered into the development budget.
4. The national budget process will allocate resources to NPPs and review their performance annually.
5. Ministries execute activities. Each minister is responsible for implementing policies, programs and projects related to his/her ministry. When necessary, a minister will coordinate with other ministries and organization to implement programs. Each minister will periodically review progress on implementation and report to relevant council and to the cabinet.