Remarks by Ms. Veena Reddy, Mission Director, USAID/Cambodia, Launch of Civic Tech Tools on One Window Service Offices

Thursday, August 27, 2020
Remarks by Ms. Veena Reddy, Mission Director, USAID/Cambodia, Launch of Civic Tech Tools on One Window Service Offices

(as prepared for delivery)

  • Your Excellency Mr. Ngoun Rattanak, Governor of Battambang
  • Representatives from the Municipality of Battambang 
  • Representatives from One Window Service Offices
  • Representatives from Citizen Offices
  • Mr. Lendell Foan
  • Distinguished guests, ladies, and gentlemen

 

It is an honor to be here today for the launch of these very important civic tech tools. As will be shown and explained in detail by our teams, these tools include a Facebook-based chatbot and an Interactive Voice Response system, known generally as IVR. These two civic tech tools offer information explaining the application processes for key services at the One Window Service Offices as well as the required documents, materials, and service fees. They also provide citizens the opportunity to give their direct feedback on the quality of services received. In addition, these technologies will connect citizens with their District Ombudsman to discuss service improvements.

USAID is proud to support these civic tech tools developed as part of the One Window for Citizens project or OW4C. This project is a three-year effort that uses technology to provide Cambodian citizens clear, transparent information on public services available to them through the government’s One Window Service Offices. We understand that technology alone is insufficient to achieve impact. We know that we need to work directly with communities to provide information on public services as well as social accountability measures such as the community scorecard. In its first year, the project works in Battambang but will expand to Banteay Meanchey and Siem Reap in its second and third years.

This project is part of the U.S. government’s long-term commitment to support Cambodia’s journey to self-reliance. This year we are celebrating the 70th anniversary of the establishment of our two countries. Throughout the year, we are focusing on different themes of our cooperation each month. This month, we are focusing on humanitarian assistance, which is where much of our assistance was focused on, especially in the 1990s. But another major part of our efforts has been focused on helping Cambodia build a transparent and accountable democracy, and to become self-reliant in its efforts to provide good governance. We will reflect more on these contributions during the month of December.

A critical piece of that self-reliance journey includes the support of public participation, transparent and accountable governance, and community engagement for all Cambodians. This is a key feature of a stable democracy. As part of our focus on promoting social accountability through transparency, we have been testing ways to better connect Cambodian citizens to information on government services. Aside from the USAID One Window for Citizens, USAID has currently awarded three other social accountability projects:

  • First, Innovations for Social Accountability - or ISAC - is a five-year project supporting technologies that help Cambodians to improve public services, strengthening social accountability and transparency.
  • Second, Tech for Green Cities - or T4GC - is a three-year project supporting technologies that will help Cambodians in Battambang and Banteay Meanchey to improve solid waste management services by empowering citizens to monitor those services.
  • Last, Solid Waste Accountability Platform - or SWAP - is a three-year project also supporting technologies that will help Cambodians in Siem Reap and Kampong Thom to improve solid waste management services by empowering citizens to monitor services

I would like to close by thanking the Ministry of Interior, His/Her Excellency the Governor/Deputy Governor, the Municipality of Battambang, One Window Service Offices, and Citizen Offices for all the support and collaboration provided to the USAID One Window for Citizens project. We hope that these tools will enhance accountability and transparency, and thereby, improve the quality of these very important services.

Thank you very much.

Battambang Province
Issuing Country 

Last updated: September 24, 2020

Share This Page