ISLAMABAD, 16 December, 2014: In an effort to ensure more sustainable transparency and accountability in Refugee Affected and Hosting Areas (RAHA) projects, the United Nations and the Government of Pakistan Tuesday inaugurated the newly-developed Management Information System (MIS).
Developed with the financial support of the European Union (EU), the new system provides a comprehensive database that contains quality assured information on more than 3,000 projects carried out within the RAHA programme since it started in 2009 until now, with donor contributions of some USD 175million. To date, more than 4.2 million Pakistanis and 0.8 million Afghan refugees have benefited from RAHA projects.
The newly-developed MIS is a user-friendly online database where information related to projects is listed under different categories including statistics related to beneficiaries, financial summaries, detailed locations and sectoral breakdown of projects for each province.
Projects implemented under the RAHA initiative are designed to improve the lives of people living in locations that have been impacted by the 35-year presence of Afghan refugees in Pakistan. By addressing the needs of host communities as well as those of refugees, the RAHA programme seeks to promote social cohesion, directly supporting the Solution Strategy for Afghan Refugees.
The programme’s interventions cover the sectors of education, health, water, sanitation and hygiene and livelihoods. To date, the RAHA programme has been supported by Australia, Denmark, EU, Germany, Japan and the United States of America.
The MIS is a government-led initiative, which will be available to all stakeholders including donors, UN Agencies, government counterparts, and national and international agencies involved in implementing the RAHA programme in Pakistan.
Speaking at the inaugural ceremony, Secretary of the Ministry for States and Frontier Regions, Mr Pir Bakhsh Jamali stated that the availability of online data will ensure better accountability of funds allocated in different sectors for different areas. ”The MIS is an information tool which will enable all stakeholders, especially, donors to make an informed decision on which areas or sectors need more support and attention in terms of projects and funding,” he elaborated.
Yakub Mahsud, Chief Coordinator RAHA, said “Detailed information on projects and beneficiaries will potentially encourage more donors to support RAHA interventions which have benefited approximately 4.2 million Pakistanis to date.”
A key component of the Solutions Strategy for Afghan Refugees, the RAHA programme has been designed under the leadership of the Ministry of States and Frontier Regions (SAFRON) at the Federal level. At provincial level, it is supported by Line Ministries and Departments including the Commissionerates of Afghan Refugees.
The inauguration of MIS was attended by Government officials from SAFRON and the Economic Affairs Division, representatives from the UN Agencies, and donors.