Call for expressions of interest to support the implementation of reforms to improve the institutional environment of cities and subnational governments in Africa

1. Context and justification of the Call for Expression of Interest

Since 2012, UCLG Africa publishes every three years, in collaboration with Cities Alliance, a triennial report about “Assessing the institutional environment of cities and local governments in Africa”. This report is released on the occasion of the Africities Summits (2012, 2015, 2018, 2021).

This report classifies African countries according to 12 indicators to assess the favorability of the institutional environment created by the Central Government to the initiatives and actions of cities and subnational governments.

To assess this environment, the following 12 indicators were used:

1. Provisions in the constitutional framework;
2. Provisions in the legislative framework;
3. Provisions for subnational governance;
4. Provisions for financial transfers from the central government to the subnational governments;
5. Provisions concerning subnational governments’ own revenues;
6. Provisions for capacity building of subnational governments;
7. Provisions for transparency in the operation and management of subnational governments;
8. Provisions for citizen participation;
9. Provisions for subnational government performance;
10. The presence or absence of a national strategy in terms of urbanization management;
11. The participation of women in local governance
12. The involvement or non-involvement of subnational governments in the fight against climate change.

Each indicator is given a rating from 1 to 4. A summary score out of 48 is then established, which makes it possible to classify African countries into 4 color classes:

1. Green (score greater than or equal to 36): countries with the most favorable enabling environment for the action of cities and subnational governments according to the standards adopted.
South Africa; Uganda; Morocco; Tanzania

2. Yellow (score less than 36 and greater than or equal to 30): Countries whose environment is somewhat favorable to the action of cities and subnational governments, but where some improvements are needed.
Kenya; Zimbabwe; Rwanda; Senegal; Mauritius; Ghana; Burundi; Zambia

3. Orange (score less than 30 and greater than or equal to 24): Countries whose progress towards an enabling environment for cities and subnational governments would require major reform efforts.
Cameroon; Benin; Sierra Leone; Burkina Faso; Madagascar; Tunisia; Malawi; Namibia; Eswatini; Mali; Niger; Cabo Verde; Nigeria; Togo; Djibouti; Gabon; Mauritania; Botswana; Côte d’Ivoire; Ethiopia; Chad; Mozambique.

4. Red (score below 24): countries whose environment is generally unfavorable to the action of cities and subnational governments.
Seychelles; Angola; Lesotho; The Gambia; Comoros; Algeria; Guinea Conakry; Sao Tome and Principe; Eritrea; Democratic Republic of Congo; Liberia; South Sudan; Equatorial Guinea; Egypt; Central African Republic; Sudan; Guinea-Bissau; Somalia.

Each country is the subject of a fact sheet where its summary score is justified and where there are proposed reforms whose implementation should result in an improvement in the ranking of that country in relation to the institutional environment put in place in favor of cities and subnational governments.

2. Presentation of the call for expressions of interest

This call for expressions of interest is launched for national associations and national governments of African countries classified in the colors Orange and Red who wish to benefit from support from UCLG Africa to implement the necessary reforms needed to improve the institutional environment of cities and local governments.

The support of UCLG Africa will translate into the following actions:

⁃ Mobilization of national experts to conduct the studies necessary for the preparation of a structured dialogue between decentralization actors at the national and local levels;

⁃ Organization and moderation of workshops and seminars as part of the structured dialogue with a view to defining a roadmap shared by all actors on the implementation of the proposed reforms;

⁃ Technical assistance for the conduct of the concrete implementation process of the actions selected by the reform roadmap;

⁃ Capitalization and dissemination of the results of actions included in the reform roadmap.

The candidate, whether a national government or a national association, must assume the following responsibilities:

⁃ Designation of the focal point who will be the contact person with UCLG Africa (name and details to be attached to the application file);

⁃ Provision of equipped work premises and means of transport on site for workshops and seminars and payment of any accommodation and subsistence costs for participants in workshops and seminars;

⁃ Development and implementation of the communication strategy and actions;

⁃ Carrying out the actions selected in the reform roadmap by mobilizing all the actors concerned as well as the potential funding.

3. Response to the call for expressions of interest

This call is launched to select 10 African countries (2 countries per African region) whose national government or association wishes to benefit from technical assistance from UCLG Africa to implement reforms of the institutional environment of local and regional governments during the years 2023 and 2024.
The call officially opens on March 08, 2023 and closes on May 08, 2023.

The selection of countries will be made on the basis of the first candidate/first served criterion.

To apply, the national government or the national association must submit the following documents:

⁃ Letter of commitment signed by the Minister in charge of local governments and/or decentralization of the candidate country in the case where the Association is the one submitting the application;

⁃ Letter of commitment signed by the President of the National Association of Local Authorities of the candidate country;

⁃ Designation of a focal point responsible for being the point of reference for the intervention.

These documents must be sent to the General Secretariat of UCLG Africa, by:
E-mail, to : ;
copy; ;
Postal address, to: General Secretariat of UCLG-Africa,
22 Rue Essaadyine, Hassan, 10020, Rabat, Morocco

Download the call for expressions of interest here