USAID Government Accountability Initiative

BACKGROUND

The Serbia Government Accountability Initiative (GAI) is a four-year, $8.5 million activity that works with key Serbian stakeholders to increase government accountability at the national and local levels.

ACTIVITIES

The project is structured around three components:

  • Local Government Accountability: GAI supports efforts to increase public participation in local government decision making and oversight to enhance the transparency and accountability of local self-government (LSG) operations. GAI is providing technical assistance to LSGs interested in increasing public participation in local budget planning, spending, improving public service delivery, institutionalizing whistleblower protection programs, and increasing transparency through improved strategic communications.  
  • Independent Oversight Institutions: GAI aims to strengthen monitoring of government performance and accountability by providing technical assistance to independent oversight institutions (IOIs), such as the State Audit Institution, Anti-corruption Agency and the Commissioner for Protection of Information of Pubic Importance. GAI is providing technical assistance to these institutions to increase their focus on risk-based prevention and detection of corruption, improve oversight through the introduction of related policy and procedural reforms, build organizational capacities to implement policy reforms, and facilitate cooperation between IOIs and enforcement institutions to improve the prosecution and adjudication of corruption cases.
  • Adjudication of Corruption Cases: GAI works with specialized anti-corruption court units and public prosecutors’ offices (PPOs) to support the adjudication of corruption cases and to establish an electronic register of corruption cases. The register will provide timely information on the status of corruption cases, detect bottlenecks in the prosecution and adjudication of these cases and enable the identification of strategies to increase the efficiency of these court units and public prosecutor’s offices.

RESULTS TO DATE

  • GAI selected the first group of seven LSGs to support the development of transparency and accountability strategies: Šabac, Sombor, Vranje, Vrnjačka Banja, Raška, Sjenica, and Dimitrovgrad;
  • GAI trained more than 150 IOI officials in leading policy reforms and managing organizational change that increases risk-based oversight of government operations;
  • GAI facilitated dialogues between the IOIs and the National Assembly to aid inter-institutional communication that increases the utilization of IOI reporting.
  • The Supreme Court of Cassation adopted a template GAI created to improve corruption case statistical reporting;
  • GAI partnered with the Ministry of Justice and the Republic PPO to train over 150 public prosecutor staff on how to standardize the collection and exchange of data related to corruption cases.

Project funded by:

U.S. Agency for International Development; USAID/Serbia

Project implemented by:

Checchi and Company Consulting, Inc.

Key counterparts:

State Audit Institution (SAI), Anti-Corruption Agency (ACA), Local Governments (LGs), Anti-corruption court units and public prosecutors’ offices.

Where we work:

Nationwide

Total amount:

$8,573,738

Project duration:

February 2018 – February 2022

Contact:

Checchi and Company Consulting, Inc.

Street: Makenzijeva 24/ 3

11 000 Belgrade

Phone: +381 11 4145880

Fax: + 381 11 4145880

E-mail:
GAI-Belgrade@checchiconsulting.com

Last updated: April 04, 2019

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