including greater outreach to the region's 180 indigenous communities
had only minimal involvement in the development plan and in local government.
Finally, DG staff should support the writing, publication and dissemination of a well researched
case study of the local government initiative in San Martin and the lessons that can be learned by
others, as a way of disseminating this as a model of democratic local governance.
b. Support efforts to extend this model to other parts of the country.
Initially, this would be focused
on the other coca growing regions where USAID is present. If additional resources become
available this might also include non coca growing regions. USAID should also use the
opportunity of the Peru Ecuador border initiative to apply some key approaches and lessons
learned from the San Martin project.
c. Stimulate national debate on the need for democratic decentralization and more local control of
In this effort, D/G staff should use the experience of San Martin, as well as other
successful models of local governance and regional association in such areas as Cajamarca and
Selected municipalities and regional mayors associations (San Martin, Peru Ecuador
border region) are more autonomous, better capable of governing at the local level, and more
effectively support competition and inclusion through decentralization.
Summary of Recommendations and Priorities
As mentioned at the outset, the above recommendations are not all of equal priority, and if they were all
pursued simultaneously they would well surpass the annual resource limitations of the current D/G
program. For this reason, the Team assigned them a relative order of priority, taking into account the
three criteria of importance, impact, and USAID comparative advantage. To summarize, when these
criteria are considered the following prioritization and rationale emerged across the recommendations:
No. 1: Justice and Human Rights.
Justice and human rights interventions are critical to check and
balance the current exercise of Executive power, and will figure prominently on any proposed agenda for
democratic reform. The
Defensoria del Pueblo
Coordinadora Nacional de Derechos Humanos
have proven themselves capable of tackling issues of impunity, monitoring government actions in this
realm, and generating concrete reform proposals. Although other donors are engaged in this area,
USAID can be critical both for its willingness to offer institutional development support and for the
political protection U.S. support can provide. In turn, USAID gains a great deal of benefit from
remaining involved in supporting these activities.
No. 2: Civil and Political Society.
Stronger parties and interest associations that hold government
accountable and allows for potential new leaders to emerge are essential for more effective democratic
competition. Although the strengthening of political society takes on new urgency in the wake of the
2000 elections, the likelihood of impact in this area is more difficult to anticipate. While some of our
proposed interventions build on ongoing support for civil society groups, the emphasis on dialogue about
electoral and party reform is new. Since few donors are engaged in the area of parties and political
representation directly, and the fragmentation of the sector is a critical weakness, USAID assistance here
could fill an important void.
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