The Directorate of Regional Integration (DRI) in the Lesotho Ministry of Finance in collaboration with the SADC Strengthening National Regional Linkages (SNRL) Programme on 8-10 July 2019 facilitated the first ever Training of Trainers (TOT) on the use of the SADC online monitoring and evaluation system in an effort to enhance progress tracking in the implementation of SADC (national, regional and sectoral) policies and programmes in Lesotho.
The TOT which was conducted by the SADC Secretariat M&E Unit follows a scoping study that was undertaken in 2018 which reported that implementation of the SADC regional integration agenda in Lesotho faces numerous challenges at the national level due to structural, procedural and resource deficits of the institutions charged with the coordination of SADC Protocols and related RI programmes. The Kingdom of Lesotho has recognised the need to urgently act and confront the various capacity challenges Lesotho faces to deliver on the RI mandate.
The training offered the Lesotho officials an opportunity to familiarise themselves with the Secretariat M&E Unit, and to cultivate rapport with the Secretariat while at the same time establishing links of communication to be used for giving feedback, reporting challenges and problems and communicating updates on the trainings that will be undertaken by the trained officials in Lesotho. Ultimately, improved capacities to monitor and evaluate progress in SADC regional strategies and protocols will support alignment of national-regional plans at the national level.
This initiative is running concurrently with a process to establish SADC Cluster Sub-Committees, in line with the SADC Treaty, to strengthen national coordination and implementation of the SADC agenda in the Kingdom. The trained officials in the TOT will be training participants of proposed SADC Cluster groupings in Lesotho in the week beginning 22 July over four days. Lesotho DRI is implementing all these initiatives in collaboration with the SADC-SNRL Programme – a partnership programme between SADC, the European Union (EU) and the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) implemented by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit GmbH (GIZ).
Through these initiatives Lesotho’s capacity to manage and monitor the implementation of SADC strategies and priority protocols will be enhanced and ultimately Lesotho’s influence in the SADC policy making will be informed by regular progress monitoring and reporting, while Sectoral policy and budget making processes will be evidence based and informed by the SADC monitoring systems.