Ins and outs of supervision mission

Day 4 – Thursday 7 May

Perin and Dr Jimoh, RTEP Programme Manager Nigeria, were interviewed by a local radio. The interview was aired today 7 May at 7h. I have received a radio but I realized this morning that they did not give me batteries.

We have Internet connection today. I will be able to send files to Roxy for posting on the blog. While the connection is still available, I showed the blog to the participants.

I started the day by presenting a summary of yesterday presentations as well as the findings of day 3’s evaluation. Main issues in the evaluation sheets are:
  • More time for procurement
  • Field visit should be included in the workshop structure
  • M & E should be included in the workshop structure as well.

All participant acknowledged that the workshop structure allows knowledge sharing – panellist, role play, guest speakers, interactions between participants and case studies.

Today, we will have some hands-on practice on preparing for supervision mission, procurement, and fiduciary responsibilities as well as presentations on internal control, KM and a guest speaker on quality control on project supervision.

Mr Attah, the guest speaker of the day, Project Coordinator of REP, Ghana, presented his experience on requirements to ensure quality control in implementation. To ensure quality control, all processes of project must be implemented using a participatory approach, including M & E.

“Stakeholders review meetings is a very important tool for ensuring quality control in my project – I organized quarterly review meetings and annual review meetings.”

He also recommended paying attention on mid-term review and supervision missions as tools for ensuring quality in project implementation.

They are factors that can affect quality control:

  • Capacity building
  • Ownership and commitment of staff and beneficiaries
  • Team spirit and belongingness
  • Flexibility in project implementation.

Perin intervened to share two points on the project managed by Mr Attah:
  • Besides the terrible design of the project, Mr Attah has been able to achieve excellent results and impacts.
  • In reviewing the portfolio of the division, REP, Ghana is considered as the best project in the region.
  • REP one of the few projects domiciled out the Ministry of Agriculture. Institutional arrangement is very important in project implementation.
Before the guest speaker, a session on procurement procedures took place. This session has been followed by case studies including what IFAD supervision missions verified during their visits.

Doudou, the procurement consultant, presented an evaluation grid for bids on procurement and issues to consider when a project is about to be completed. Participants expressed concerns on delays receiving feedbacks from CPMs.

Before lunch, I introduced participants to knowledge management – a 20 minutes session on initiating, implementing and supervising kM activities. The purpose was to help projects introduce KM into their work planning. A slide was presented on the supervision of project sharing mechanisms and activities. A checklist based on IFAD result framework and WARF self-assessment tool of KM activities has been developed for this purpose.

After this heavy session, Stefania and Karen came in for another bone cracking exercise which energized participants and kept them awake.

Then Stefania remained in front of the participants to present fiduciary responsibilities followed by the consultant who introduced internal control. “Internal information is very important to improve internal control. People need to know what they can do and what they cannot do”.

Then we have coffee break. Today we have coffee with yam and fried beans balls.

Martin started the last session of the day on the case study “preparing for supervision mission”.

We closed the day with a sad note as the workshop got a shocking news on the death of Perin’s Father. A one-minute-silence was there on observed for the deceased. May his soul rest in peace!

By Zoumana Bamba