IDEP gives tailor-made training to build capacity of Gambia’s development planners

After a successful tailor-made Training of Trainers in “Results Based Management” last year to the support the implementation of its new National Development Plan (2018-2021), the Gambia through the Directorate of Development Planning, Ministry of Finance and Economic Affairs has again requested this year to the African Institute for Economic Development and Planning (IDEP), for a new tailor-made course in “Project Management”.

The main purpose of this training is building the capacity of the development planners to support the development of bankable project proposals and effective management of projects in line with the flagship projects outlined in the National Development Plan.

The TOT has gathered 37 Gambian civil servants, including 10 women drawn from different Ministries, Department and Agencies: such as the Ministry of Finance and Economic Affairs; Ministry of Agriculture; Ministry of Higher Education, Research, Science and Technology; Ministry of Health and Social Welfare; Ministry of  Interior; Ministry of Petroleum and Energy; Ministry of Fisheries and Water Resources; Ministry of Environment, Climate Change and Natural Resources, Ministry of Justice; Ministry of  Information, Communication and Infrastructure; Ministry of Tourism and Culture; The Gambia Police Force; The Gambia Immigration Department, The Office of Ombudsman; Women’s Bureau and the Office of the Vice-President.

 In his opening remarks, Mr. Abdou Touray, Programme Specialist for Poverty Eradication and Inclusive Growth from UNDP stated that globally, over eighty percent of project failure is attributed to poor management including ill-design. In the Gambia, past evaluation of development plans showed weak capacity in the public sector to implement planned programmes, projects and activities leading to poor development results. Projects are often not well conceived and not efficiently managed to deliver the expected results. Sectors have not developed mechanisms to prevent poor project management but instead keep on extending project life times and designing new ones without assessing their management efficiencies and effectiveness. Therefore, this training will contribute greatly in the expected reforms of all sectors of the economy by empowering the planning cadre with robust knowledge and competencies in Project Management.

Mr. Abdou Touray expressed his gratitude to UNECA and IDEP for their collaborative support and in the partnership with UNDP with UN performing as one.

Mr. Alagie Fadera, Director of Development Planning, Ministry of Finance and Economic Affairs of the Gambia, indicated that this training programme is part of the Government’s commitment to enhancing capacities to address the perceived capacity gaps to support reforms aimed at strengthening development of bankable project proposals for the effective implementation of the National Development Plan (NDP 2018 - 2021). The training is expected to familiarize the participants on the use of selected tools on project proposal formulation, project proposal writing, and management strongly linked to the different priorities of the NDP.

Mr. Alagie Fadera added that choice of IDEP as an institution to deliver this programme is well informed.  IDEP has been established to support African governments in their training and capacity development efforts in the fields of economic management and planning. Since its establishment in 1962, it has worked closely with its Member States to assess their needs and develop general, specialized, and tailor-made courses for their mid-career and senior officials. Scores of Gambians have benefitted from this training courses over the years.

 Ms. Zeynabou Kane, IDEP’s Training and Research Division, mentioned that IDEP’s mission is to strengthen the capacities of African countries in line with the 2030 (SDGs) and 2063 (The Africa we want) agendas and the national development plans.

She further indicated that the expected results of this TOT include the enhancement of participants’ knowledge of key concepts of Project Management; Project Scope Management; Project Cost Management; Project Quality Management; Project Risk Management; Project Finance; Project Appraisal and Development and Key Success Factors for Proposal Development.

Mr. Percy Anaab Bukari, Trainer stated that participants are expected to participate fully in discussions, bring their respective knowledge, skills and experiences to bear to create the needed scenarios to enrich the training process. As a TOT, the trainees are expected to fully engage in the entire process to be capacitated enough to replicate the process in their respective institutions when they resume work.

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