Building a new social contract
UNDP is supporting the Government in the following areas:
Improving the capacity of Vanuatu’s electoral authorities contribute to its ability to enhance the political process through credible and transparent electoral processes. UNDP, through the Vanuatu Electoral Environment Project (VEEP) is supporting the democratic development of Vanuatu by:
- Supporting the electoral activities, national election that was held in March 2020, the first election in the world to be conducted after the pandemic was declared. Despite the country having no confirmed cases, the preparations for elections had to factor in the risk and put in place important mitigation measures. VEEP advised the electoral authorities to liaise with the national health authorities and the government to coordinate a response. The project also liaised with other UN agencies (WHO and UNICEF) and private sector to set-up hand washing stations at polling stations, as well as to purchase personal protective equipment, hand sanitizers and disinfectants for electoral officers to be used during polling and counting operations.
- Providing reliable populational statistics to support the COVID-19 preparedness and providing rapid response services to the population affected by Tropical Cyclone Harold, including preparations for the 2020 National Census.
Institutional continuity of the Vanuatu Parliament to fulfil its constitutional mandate with a specific focus on its continuity despite COVID-19 restrictions through:
- strategic and technical advice for review and adaptation of parliamentary procedure to the new working context
- support the development of internal Standard Operating Procedures and Business Continuity Plan to ensure administrative continuity
- assist the digitalization and capacity to work remotely by providing ICT equipment to allow virtual meetings of committees, virtual public consultations and budget discussions.
A specific assistance is proposed on strengthening parliamentary oversight of the Executive response to the pandemic and provide a ‘surge’ capacity to conduct an independent parliamentary budget analysis on COVID-19 response packages through the Pacific Floating Budget Office, especially on cross-cutting thematic issues such as gender inclusivity and climate change finance.
Provision of technical policy and advisory support on COVID-19 and corruption. An advisory note on ‘COVID-19 and Corruption in the Pacific’ has been prepared and distributed to Pacific governments. A series of COVID-19 activities are being implemented, including in relation to addressing the procurement risks, capacity building for corruption risk assessment in the health sector, alerting of human-rights implications of corruption under COVID-19 and awareness raising of COVID-19 corruption risks across all sectors of society.