Agricultural Growth Program (AGP) 2 has counted about 10 years of time (two phases) with its intervention under 5 components in selected 45 potential woredas and respective 1088 kebeles. It undertakes different model subprojects in the first 4 components that contribute to enhance marketoriented productivity and increase income at household level on special focus of benefiting women and youth. The subprojects of AGP 2 include small scale and micro irrigations, market centers, feeder roads, bridges, cattle crashes and Farmer Training Centers (FTCs). Environmental Social Management
Framework/Environmental Social Impact Assessment ESMF/ESIA is the priority requirement of AGP 2 objective achievement both from the government and donner interest.
Environment protection organization used to complain that AGP 2 subprojects were implemented without (ESIA) and the organization was considered as work hindrance and antidevelopment entity by project contractors and implementors. The organization reflects it was forced to approve ESMP documents prepared without assessment on AGP 2 subprojects just for the sake of securing financial support from donors and most of assessments were conducted after project implementation started for formality purpose. The focus was only on the suitability, profitability and economic feasibility of projects neglecting the environmental and social issues. The society was not well consulted and stakeholders, including affected and beneficiary persons, were not well considered. Consequently, beneficiaries used to negatively view projects aslimiters of their advantage and did not aspire for bright future to the level they feel they are not owners of the projects. This situation resulted on limited implementation of projects and their sustainability.
According to the Rapid Institutional Capacity Assessment (RICA) report (July, 2016), numerous projects, including AGP1, had generated unintended environmental and social consequences in ways not imagined. Those consequences emerged due to skill gap; limited understanding of higher officials on ESMF; weak implementation of accountability and reporting structures; absence of mechanism to confirm voluntary land donation reports; and lack of applying effective conflict resolution mechanisms. Pursuant to the gaps identified in its report, RICA recommended to ensure that Environmental Management Plan (EMP) would be followed up in all subprojects continually throughout AGP2 and this was recognized as an initiative of CDSF.
Pursuant to the RICA report CDSF has been designing and implementing different ESMF interventions from 2016 to date to alleviate the identified gaps on AGP 2 subproject implementation. Based on annual plans, action points set by the national Technical Working Group (TWG) and ToTs provided by national
consultants, Amhara Region CDSF together with Program Coordination Unit (PCU) and Implementing Agencies (IAs) performed the following activities:
- • Delivered trainings to 781 (20% female), 860 (21% female) and 1298 (27% female) for regional, zonal, woreda and kebele experts on enhanced ESMF/RPF/SA/CSA internal audit implementation; environmental and social impact assessment/resettlement action plan as well as Interface b/n
- engineering and ES safeguards planning, enhanced implementation of environmental and social mitigation measures, integrated pest management planning, gender inclusion in ES safeguards, stakeholder analysis and mapping respectively,
- • Conducted an awareness raising event for 21 regional leaders on ESMF/RPF/SA
- • Distributed voluntary land donation video to 177 woreda and kebele experts,
- • Supplied practitioners with essential templates developed by environmental and social consultants from region to kebele levels for effective AGP 2 subproject implementation. The templates include, but not limited to, community consultation, voluntary land donation, grievance filing and reporting…
- • Developed Grievance Redress Mechanism (GRM) animated video and its respective training for concerned practitioners
- • Conducted joint monitoring by CDSF CDS, AGP 2 safeguard specialists and IA experts repeatedly and supported 54 woreda and kebele experts (20% female) on the subject
- • Provided JES by the activity lead reginal CDS and 6 Zonal Capacity Development Officers (ZCDOs) for 2044 reginal, zonal, woreda and kebele experts (there is repetition as JES continues from year to year)
Implementing agencies have showed attitudinal changes, considered ESMF procedures as essential requirements for environmental sustainability and social acceptance and started to support and implement formal ESMF procedures for AGP 2 subprojects and the responsible institution, environment
protection line office, has got substantial support to its works. 1092 AGP 2 sub-projects fulfilled ESMP requirements due to the trainings provided from ESMF 1 3 and subsequent JESs by regional and zonal CDSF. 791 community consultations conducted for AGP 2 sub-projects using the standard template
developed by our/world bank consultants. Formerly supplied VLD videos have been provided to 117 woreda/kebele experts and displayed for the same at 117 training sessions. 903 VLD templates signed by affected persons who released their land for different AGP 2 sub-projects. 317 woreda and kebele Grievance Redress Committees (GRCs) established in the new form after ESMF 3 training and subsequent JESs were provided with appropriate CRM templates in 2012 EPY, conflicts are being resolved following the newly established procedures. Overall improvement of ESMF technical performance has been achieved in AGP 2 woredas that has been contributing to AGP 2 environmental sustainability and social acceptance. As a result of CDSF precious support, AGP 2 overall performance has been rated by world bank as moderately satisfactory at quarter 3 of the EPY 2012 that was rated as under satisfactory formerly and obstructed the AGP 2 additional finance approval.
Paradigm change can be registered and people image on institutions and their process can be converted with well-organized multi-stakeholder approach and endeavor towards capacity development starting from needs assessment through gap filling training material and executive template supply as well as
training delivery to JES and follow up.
4 woreda AGP 2 irrigation engineers, 4 woreda agriculture office irrigation engineers, 6 woreda environment office experts, 6 woreda AGP focal persons and 1 woreda natural resource expert, in total 21 woreda experts from Dejen, Jabitahinan, Burie, G/shikudad, Farta and E/Dembia woredas as well as the regional AGP 2 safeguard specialist were interviewed in March and June, 2020 and all have assured the above achievement.
The world bank ‘moderately satisfactory’ rate regarding AGP 2 ESMF performance is tangible evidence to CDSF effective support on capacity development, JES and joint monitoring.
An interview was conducted with ESMF beneficiaries; of which, Emahoy Shashie Tegegne was the one (Fig. 1). She is a monk and lives in Gonder-Zuria woreda, Sendeba kebele and has donated her farm-land for ‘Wofoch-Irrigation-project through the Voluntary Land Donation (VLD) process. She says “after I discussed with kebele project practitioners about the benefits and objectives of the project to the kebele and woreda community, I stopped my refusal of delivering farm land to the project and have given my 72 m2 hectare of crop land voluntarily”.
W/ro Fenta Marew who lives in Farta woreda, Kanat kebele has provided her 200 m2 of crop land willingly through the VLD process for the 2010/11 EC constructed ‘Zawra bridge’ project. She says “when I was requested to leave my farm-land for the project, I refused the idea since I am in short of land for my family subsistence. However, after the clarification by kebele practitioners regarding the benefit of the bridge to the community to link agricultural production and market and I received parcel of land as substitute to my donation”.
After ESMF training ToTs were delivered to regional and zonal practitioners by CDSF and rolled out to woredas and kebeles by AGP 2, with technical support from CDSF, grievances raised in the process of project construction and development have been successfully addressed through the well-established grievance redress mechanism (committee establishment, training to committees, template development and delivery, JES and follow up). Ato Gizie segaw and W/ro Tshaynesh Tsega are partners who had grievance on IAs decision to construct night water storage for Teratoch irrigation project on their backyard land. However, they complained they have plan to construct their home on their land and, hence, refuse receiving the land to be given them as substitute. The kebele and woreda grievance redress committee considered their complaint and decided to cancel using their land for night water storage and make other adjustments that can replace it.
Another achievement of the ESMF training delivery by CDSF is correcting the community consultaiton gap existed formerly. Before, the training to experts and awareness creation to regional leaders, the project work was only top down without through consultation to the surrounding community. But, after the training, the community is well consulted by beneficiary, project affected group, up and down stream residers involving women, youth and vulnerable gorups that have improved ownership and sustainabiliy of projects. Some of the pictures taken during community consultaitons are depicted below.