- Grant Total: $16,898,160
- Signed: March 18, 2008
Niger’s threshold program is designed to assist Niger improve its performance on the policy areas measured by the Control of Corruption, Land Rights, Business Start-Up and Girls’ Primary School Education indicators used on MCC’s scorecard. The $23.1 million threshold program focuses on improving the quality of and access to education for girls and by improving local governance and reducing corruption through increased through civil society engagement, improved business start-up procedures tax codes, and revised trade laws.
MCC’s Board of Directors suspended the Niger threshold program, effective December 31, 2009, due to political events that were inconsistent with the criteria used to determine a country’s eligibility for MCC assistance.
- Design and implement a large-scale communication strategy and two hundred local action plans to increase girls’ primary school enrollment.
- Provide gender-sensitive training and student tutoring.
- Implement activities to motivate school-age girls to improve school performance, to include provision of school supplies, organized camps and student competitions.
- Support Associations of Mothers in Education to design and implement income-generating activities to support school financial sustainability.
- Provide incentive packages to female teachers to accept jobs in rural areas.
- Support the construction of up to two hundred “girl-friendly” classrooms
Strengthen the Legal Framework, Audits and Prosecutions:
- Establish a national anti-corruption information system coordinated and managed by the National Statistics
- Institute in order to establish baseline data on corruption control, including perception-based and experience-based corruption statistics and information on enforcement and disciplinary measures.
- Build the capacity of approximately five hundred civil servants throughout the government in investigation and auditing corruption.
- Conduct a study on strengthening the current judicial framework with respect to combating corruption and support administrative and legislative reforms to implement the conclusions of the study.
- Build the administrative capacity of audit bodies and the judiciary to combat corruption.
- Improve Transparency in Public Procurement:
- Enhance the Public Procurement Regulatory Agency’s (ARMP) ability to conduct audits of procurements.
- Train members of public procurement commissions selected from the Public Procurement Regulatory Agency, the Ministries of Education and Health and senior officers of the public procurement directorate.
- Establish a website and a public procurement journal to publish tenders and criteria for selecting bids and to inform the public about the rules for public procurement.
- Draft and publicize all procurement schedules in the media.
- Strengthen the Role of Civil Society Organizations and the Media.
- Train government officials in the area of public relations in order to publish inspection and audit reports in conformity with legal and human rights provisions.
- Train one hundred journalists on how to coordinate with civil society to investigate and process information in the fight against corruption.
- Provide support to disseminate information on laws and the rights of users of services in the education and health sectors.
- Launch an anticorruption media campaign.
- Support the inclusion of modules on corruption control in the outreach activities of other donors and civil society organizations active in the health and education sectors through existing coordination mechanisms.
- Establish a support and advisory mechanism to provide technical and financial support for civil society and media on corruption control, and set up civic action groups to develop anticorruption strategies within schools and health centers.
Facilitate Business Creation
- Establish the administrative, legal and regulatory structures required to implement business facilitation reforms.
- Complete a study on alternative sources of financing for institutions dependent on business registration fees (as the Niger Threshold Program proposes to eliminate these fees) and an additional study on supporting business start-up.
- Computerize the processes for starting a new business.
- Develop and distribute “how to” guides on new business creation.
Improve Land Rights and Access to Land
- Implement administrative and legal reforms to reduce the time and costs associated with land ownership transfer, land valuation, building permitting and notarization.
- Conduct a study on the institutional framework required to implement necessary reforms, with the recommendations to be implemented during the second year of the Program.
- Organize a public awareness campaign to publicize land reform activities.
- Conduct a study on how to integrate Land Commission titles into Niger’s land registry, with the recommendations to be implemented in the medium-term as part of Niger’s broader rural development strategy.