Payment of per diems and allowances has been a matter of debate in East Africa for quite some time. A new report entitled ‘Hunting for Per Diem- The Uses and Abuses of Travel Compensation in Three Developing Countries’ was presented in Oslo, Norway on 23 April 2012 at a seminar organized by the Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation (Norad). The Chr. Michelsen Insitute carried out the study in Tanzania, Malawi and Ethiopia in 2011.
In a talk given by video, Twaweza Head Rakesh Rajani finds lots of useful material in the report, including its description of the many creative forms of allowance abuse. He suggests three practical ways the problem could be addressed within the frame of the report. But Rajani also takes issue with its recommendations, saying that reforming administration of allowances will not really solve the problem, and instead calls for something more radical. He suggests shifting the nature of compensation from inputs to paying for outcomes may be just the tonic. Watch his remarks on video here and read an older but still relevant op-ed from The Citizen on the same issue. The Norad report can be downloaded below.
Tanzania's VijanaFM dissects the Norad report and muses about the potential for open government to enhance the monitoring of the use of public money.
- Hunting for Per Diem: The Uses and Abuses of Travel Compensation in Three Developing Countries | 1.67 MB
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