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Implementation Completion Report (ICR) Review - Emergency Living Conditions Improvement Support Project


  
1. Project Data:   
ICR Review Date Posted:
09/23/2013   
Country:
Congo Democratic Republic
PROJ ID:
P088619
Appraisal
Actual
Project Name:
Emergency Living Conditions Improvement Support Project
Project Costs(US $M)
 82.00  81.81
L/C Number:
CH164
Loan/Credit (US $M)
 82.00  81.81
Sector Board:
Urban Development
Cofinancing (US $M)
 0  0
Cofinanciers:
Board Approval Date
  05/26/2005
 
 
Closing Date
09/30/2010 06/30/2012
Sector(s):
General transportation sector (50%), General water sanitation and flood protection sector (15%), Power (15%), General public administration sector (13%), General education sector (7%)
Theme(s):
Conflict prevention and post-conflict reconstruction (33% - P) Municipal governance and institution building (17% - S) Urban services and housing for the poor (17% - S) Infrastructure services for private sector development (17% - S) Participation and civic engagement (16% - S)
         
Prepared by: Reviewed by: ICR Review Coordinator: Group:
Toneema M. Haq
Robert Mark Lacey Soniya Carvalho IEGPS1

2. Project Objectives and Components:

a. Objectives:
According to the The Memorandum and Recommendation of the President (MRP), the project's objective is "to assist the Government in improving living conditions by strengthening the socio-economic situation in key urban centers and in two isolated areas--i.e.: (i) improving delivery of basic services in provincial capitals and key medium urban centers; and (ii) restoring key transport links to reconnect two isolated regions." (p. 8).

The Development Grant Agreement (DGA) includes the objectives as articulated in the MRP, but not the more specific sub-objectives: "The objective of the Project is to assist the Recipient in improving the living conditions of the populations by strengthening the socio-economic situation in key urban areas as well as in two isolated regions." (Schedule 2).

The objectives as articulated in the MRP will be used in this Review as they are more monitorable.

b. Were the project objectives/key associated outcome targets revised during implementation?
No

c. Components:
There were five project components.

Component A: Support to medium urban centers (estimated cost: US$10.00 million; actual cost: US$13.16 million)

This financed emergency activities (for infrastructure rehabilitation, social services, and economic revitalization) in 18 cities, originally equally divided into US$500,000 per city and including US$1.0 million for management of the component. Investments were to be selected based on local level consultations. This component was a geographical expansion of similar activities under the ongoing Emergency Economic and Social Reunification Support project (EESRSP, P081850). The EESRSP covered the eastern part of the country while this component covered the western and southern provinces. Examples of activities financed under this component include construction of health centers and schools, equipment in hospitals and schools, and construction of markets. Proceeds from Components C and D were reallocated to this component.

Component B: Support to provincial capitals (estimated cost: US$27.00 million; actual cost: US$33.66 million)

This financed quick-impact investments in the capitals of the western and southern provinces. Each of the seven provincial capitals was originally allocated US$3.0 million to finance priority investments identified by the government. The remaining US$6.0 million was for support to technical institutions and management of the component. This component was also a geographic expansion of similar EESRSP activities and the investments were similar to those in Component A. Proceeds from Components C and D were reallocated to this component.

Component C: Connectivity to isolated areas (estimated cost: US$32.00 million; actual cost: US$29.95 million)

This financed the rehabilitation of key transport links (national roads RN5 and RN6) in Eastern Katanga and Northern Equateur which were poorly developed initially and suffered during the conflict (1997-2001) The purpose of this was to reduce transportation costs between production and consumption areas. This component was closed on 07/26/2010 due to poor performance of contractors, cost overruns, and difficult access to sites. By the time the component closed, nearly 94% of the funds for the component had been disbursed and the critical road sections had already been rehabilitated and most of the activities implemented. The proceeds of this component were reallocated to Components A and B.


Component D: Support to provincial institutions (estimated cost: US$7.00 million; actual cost: US$0.01 million)

This was to finance training, equipment and rehabilitation of office facilities in key provincial institutions. It was, however, closed on July 26, 2010 since most of the priority activities had already been financed by the borrower. Activities that were remaining would be implemented under the Bank's Governance Capacity Enhancement project (P104041, approved 04/22/2008)/ The proceeds were reallocated to Components A and B.


Component E: Project management (estimated cost: US$3.00 million; actual cost:US$5.03 million)

This financed coordination, monitoring and reporting on the project. The actual cost included US$2.0 million originally allocated to the project preparation facility (PPF). The PPF was not used as there was not enough time and conditions were not appropriate to permit preparatory studies to be carried out.

d. Comments on Project Cost, Financing, Borrower Contribution, and Dates
Project Cost. At project appraisal, total cost was US$82.00 million, equal to the five project components plus US$1.00 million in physical and price contingencies and US$2.00 million for the PPF. As mentioned above, the PPF was not used and those funds were added to Component E. The total actual cost was US$81.81 million.

Financing. The project was financed by an IDA grant of SDR53.9 million (US$82 million equivalent). There was no other external funding for the project.

Borrower Contribution. There was no Borrower contribution planned and none materialized. The Government did finance rehabilitation of 71 km of the Kasomeno-Kasenga portion of national road RN with its own funds.

Dates. The project was restructured three times. There is some discrepancy in the ICR on exact restructuring dates. Page 4 of the ICR reports the first restructuring as being on June 26, 2010 (it is reported as September 8, 2010 in the restructuring table in the front on the ICR) but the project team confirmed this as actually being on July 26, 2010. This restructuring closed Components C and D and reallocated the proceeds to Components A and B (see Section 2c, above). It also extended the project by one year from September, 30, 2010 to September 30, 2011. The second restructuring is reported as being on March 30, 2011 on page 4 but in the restructuring table it is April 4, 2011. The project team confirmed the March date for the second restructuring. This restructuring dropped activities under Components A and B which were no longer considered a priority (urban roads in Matadi, water supply in Mbuji-Mayi, supply of IT equipment in schools) and transferred activities facing a financing gap from the EESRSP (implementation of the resettlement action plan, works related to water supply, audits and studies for the ICR of the EESRSP) to this project. The second restructuring also extended the closing date by five months to February 29, 2012 and slightly revised the results framework. The third and final restructuring was on February 22, 2012 to extend the closing date by four months to June 30, 2012 to complete activities for the resettlement action plan of national road RN2 (transferred from the EESRSP) and some activities under Components A and B. The results framework was also revised. The project closed on June 30, 2012, 21 months after its original closing date.


3. Relevance of Objectives & Design:

a. Relevance of Objectives:
Substantial.
The first project objective, improving delivery of basic services, is relevant to the third strategic objective of the Congo Country Assistance Strategy (CAS) covering the period FY2013-FY2016.: "To increase access to social services and raise human development indicators." (p. 34). Improving access to health services and improving access to basic education are two CAS outcomes under this CAS strategic objective. Outputs under the first project objective include building and rehabilitating schools as well as health centers. The second project objective, connecting isolated areas, is relevant to the previous CAS which covered the period FY2008-FY2011. Pillar 2 of that CAS, creating conditions for growth and economic diversification, included an outcome for rehabilitation of targeted transport infrastructure. Progress made under this CAS outcome noted the reduction in transport costs between Lubumbashi and Kasenga, which was financed under this project objective.

The first objective is also relevant to the Government of Congo's development strategy. In the second Poverty Reduction Strategy Paper (PRSP, 2011), the Government outlined its vision to reduce the poverty rate from 71% to 60% by 2015. In order to achieve this, improving access to basic social services is one of the four pillars. The second project objective of connecting isolated areas is not directly relevant to the Government's strategy, but improving governance is one of the pillars of the PRSP and improved physical connections to all parts of the country is relevant to this.

b. Relevance of Design:
Modest
There was no results framework in the MRP or its Technical Annex, although the components of the project were relevant to its objectives. Components A and B financed investments in basic services for achievement of the first project objective. Component C financed transport infrastructure for achievement of the second project objective.

However, the link between the two specific objectives and the overall goals of "improving living conditions by strengthening the socio-economic situation in key urban centers and in two isolated areas" could have been clearer and more explicit.

Design would also have benefited from a more specific description of the intended effects of some activities. Investments under Components A and B were to be selected based on local level consultations, but how investments under Component C were to contribute to achieving the second project objective could have been outlined more specifically. The first project objective was articulated as an outcome, but the second was more of an output, though it did lead to several important outcomes as discussed in Section 4, below. The MRP mentioned the goal of the second objective as lowering commodity prices, but this was not discussed specifically as an outcome.


4. Achievement of Objectives (Efficacy) :

Objective 1: Improving delivery of basic services in provincial capitals and key medium urban centers is rated Modest.

Outputs
  • 13 health center and 6 hospitals, 43 schools and 523 classrooms (against a target of 334), two social service centers, and seven administrative buildings, were constructed or rehabilitated and partly equipped.
  • 11 drainage works and 13 roads were rehabilitated.
  • Six markets and 2 slaughterhouses were constructed.
  • 35.8 km of water network were constructed or rehabilitated by 2012 against a revised target set in 2010 of 7.8 km. Parts of the ICR (p. 22) report this as construction, and parts as construction and rehabilitation (p. x). 2,300 domestic water meters were installed. 95 water fountains were installed. Three reservoirs and water towers were constructed. 239 community water points were constructed or rehabilitated by 2012 against a revised target set in 2010 of 84.
  • 578 latrines were constructed, below the revised target of 599 set in 2010.

Outcomes
  • Access to services increased significantly, sometimes by more than the targets set at appraisal: 32,688 additional pupils got access to education by 2012 against a target set in 2010 of 20,000; 730,000 people got access to a basic package of health by 2012 from a baseline of zeo and against a revised target set in 2010 of 740,000; 239,000 people got access to improved water sources in 2012 against a revised target set in 2010 of 70,000; and 75,000 persons got access to latrines (there was no target for this).
  • 19,227 people living along urban roads rehabilitated in Matadi saw an increase in their revenues by 48% compared to before the rehabilitation (ICR, p. 12), though it is unclear from the ICR how this was measured, or the extent to which it could be attributed to the project.
  • By 2012, 3.5 million person days were provided in labor-intensive public works, against a target set in 2010 of 2.4 million. There were 48,000 beneficiaries of public works programs financed by this project against a target set in 2010 of 34,000.
  • The number of direct project beneficiaries was estimated as 2.89 million compared to a target of 2.73 million. 51.7% of beneficiaries were estimated to be female (based on the female population).
  • According to a beneficiary survey conducted on 57 sub-projects (out of a total of 125), " all (100 percent) beneficiaries find that the choice of infrastructures correspond to needs in their respective communities. At closing, 87 percent of beneficiaries of health facilities find that services delivered continue to respond to their expectations, while 13 percent mention overload of facilities as a problem. 80 percent of beneficiaries find the quality of construction satisfactory (with minor problems mentioned by 20 percent, principally for water, health, and sanitation). 85 percent of beneficiaries consider that such problems do not compromise the advantages of the project but that it would be necessary to take them into account to improve results" (ICR, p. 15). Little information is provided on the survey's methodology, and the caveats of beneficiary satisfaction surveys are not discussed (the main one being that beneficiaries will tend to be overly positive in order to lessen or avoid the risk of losing potential benefits).
  • However, an independent technical audit, carried out in May 2012, revealed: "(i) poor quality of studies in general, which had among other consequences the need for numerous amendments to works contracts; (ii) the insufficient quality of the bid evaluation reports with resulting extended time to procure of works and consultants; (iii) inadequate monitoring of environmental and social aspects during construction; and (iv) the lack of attention to monitoring and evaluation of projects." (ICR, p. 40).
  • Additionally, the Borrower's ICR (p. 38) suggests that the achievements in terms of sustained improvements in livelihoods and living standards were limited: "As for Part A, access to social services has been improved in general in the cities concerned and achievements begin to have very positive effects, but nothing suggests that achievements have really helped stabilize and boost economic activity." The Borrower's ICR also states that he achievements of Component B (support to provincial capitals) are not as satisfactory as those of Component A (support to medium urban centers).

Objective 2: Restoring key transport links to reconnect two isolated regions is rated Substantial.

Outputs
  • Overall, a total of 360 km. of roads (national roads RN5 and RN6) was rehabilitated by 2012, constituting 70% of the target of 522 km. set in 2010.
  • RN5 (Lubumbashi-Kasomeno-Kasenga, 208 km total), was essentially completed under the project, except for the final tar-surfacing, financed by the Government in 2009.
  • With regard to RN6 (Akula-Gemena-Mbari-Libenge-Zongo, 390 km), the following was carried out under the project: (i) treatment and earthworks on 242 km (62% of the total length); (ii) reopening of 81 km of the 165 km Akula-Gemena-Mbari section; (iii) 42 km of drainage works and 57 km of reshaping or surfacing on the Akula-Gemena section (total 115 km); and (iv) opening of 102 km of the Mbari-Zongo Mbari-Zongo section (total 220 km).

Outcomes

Since the component financing this objective was not fully disbursed at closure, all works could not, as indicated above, be completed on RN6. Completion of these works, and attempting to ensure their sustainability, are supported by the Bank-financed PROROUTES project. Nonetheless, the ICR attributes the results listed below to this project:
  • The time to travel on national road RN5 (Lubumbashi-Kasenga) has been reduced from a baseline of 60 hours to 3 hours, meeting the target set in 2010 of 3 hours. The ICR provides no information on how the time savings were calculated.
  • Travel time to reach Gemena has been reduced from one week to 1-2 days and transport cost has been halved to reach Gemena from Akula which is the the main provision port. The transport cost reduction is from a survey carried out by the Project Coordination Unit (UCoP) for the ICR mission. The ICR provides no information on how the time savings in reaching Gemena were calculated.
  • Transport costs for goods in areas located along national roads RN5 and RN6 decreased by 50-57% in 2012, surpassing the target set in 2010 of 25-30%.
  • The share of rural population with access to an all-season road increased from a baseline of zero to 22% in 2012 (there was no target for this indicator). The beneficiaries were calculated as the population living in villages neighboring the rehabilitated roads as a percentage of the total provincial population.
  • 1.9 million additional people who were cut off for several years now have access to the rest of the country (400,000 for national road RN5 and 1.5 million for the RN6).
  • The socio-economic study carried out along national road RN5 showed an increase of 177% in household revenue due to increased agricultural production for export. The ICR provides no details on this study or on the extent to which the substantial increase in exports can be attributed to the project-supported road improvements.
The MRP (p. 9) mentions, as an intended outcome of the project, a decrease in commodity prices as a result of greater supply after isolated areas become connected to the rest of the country. The ICR, however, provides no evidence of this.

5. Efficiency:

Due to the project being processed as an emergency, no economic analysis was carried out at appraisal. At closure, however, an economic rate of return (ERR) for the national road RN5 and urban roads in Matadi was calculated. These cost US$15.9 million (19.4% of total actual project cost). The net present value (NPV) for both sets of roads was US$35 million with an ERR of 23%. There was a multi-criteria analysis of national road RN6. The least-cost option was assured by a competitive bidding process to finance only the most critical sections of the road.

There was no economic analysis of the classrooms built and rehabilitated but, at appraisal, priority was given to rehabilitation rather than construction in order to keep costs down. Out of the total 523 classrooms provided by the project, 423 were rehabilitated and 100 were newly constructed. This was a cost-effective decision, since, as can be expected, the cost of rehabilitation per classroom (US$12,127) compares favorably to the cost of construction per classroom (US$15,420). However, for Component C the roads constructed were designed to a high standard and thus were not least cost.

There were long delays in project implementation. Component A had a one year delay due to time taken to recruit on-site engineers, the geographic spread of sites and the limited capacity of the construction industry. Component B was delayed due to the late recruitment of the one of the implementing agencies (Urban Rehabilitation Management Firm) and time taken to mobilize staff and develop an adequate management system. Component C had persistent delays due to lack of capacity of the contractors and the isolated locations. As noted above, the poor quality of technical studies and of the bid evaluation reports led to delays resulting from numerous amendments to works contracts and extended time to procure of works and consultants

Efficiency is Rated Modest.

a. If available, enter the Economic Rate of Return (ERR)/Financial Rate of Return at appraisal and the re-estimated value at evaluation:


Rate Available?
Point Value
Coverage/Scope*
Appraisal:
No
%
%
ICR estimate:
Yes
23%
19.4%

* Refers to percent of total project cost for which ERR/FRR was calculated

6. Outcome:

Based on Substantial Relevance of Objective, Modest Relevance of Design, Modest Efficacy for one project objective, and Substantial Efficacy of the other, and Modest Efficiency, overall outcome is assessed as Moderately Satisfactory.

a. Outcome Rating: Moderately Satisfactory

7. Rationale for Risk to Development Outcome Rating:

There is a high political risk deriving from the weakened state of government in the Congo due to continued insecurity in the east of the country.


There is a high risk to physical sustainability. For the sub-projects financed under Components A and B, "income does not cover operating expenses. Nearly 68 percent of structures do not have a maintenance budget line " (ICR, p. 33). As for the roads financed under Component C, the road maintenance fund is currently unable to provide long-term maintenance. Sustainability would be supported through the Bank-funded PROROUTES (High-Priority Roads Reopening and Maintenance Project) which will finance the remaining works on national road RN6 and finance maintenance. There is no guarantee of regular maintenance for national road RN5.


There is a significant social risk is related to the overload of demand on rehabilitated structures. Both health and education structures attract more users than their capacity leading to unsatisfied demand. The beneficiary survey reported that 13% of beneficiaries say that project results no longer meet their expectations "due to over-stretched capacity." (ICR, p. 33).

a. Risk to Development Outcome Rating: High

8. Assessment of Bank Performance:

a. Quality at entry:
As this was an emergency operation, the project was prepared in nine months. The Bank built upon experience from the ongoing Emergency Economic and Social Reunification Support project (EESRSP, P081850). In terms of financing infrastructure, this project was a geographical extension of the EESRSP which had an overall outcome rating of satisfactory in the ICR and moderately satisfactory in the IEG review of the ICR.

Shortcomings included the underestimation of rehabilitation costs of infrastructure, which led to the closing of Component C. This was mainly due to unreliable data and difficulty of access to sites. There was also an absence of technical studies. In their absence, more unallocated funds could have been set aside to cover cost increases. As mentioned in Section 2c above, the funds for the project preparation facility (US$2 million) were not used due to insufficient time time and inappropriate conditions for the carrying out of preparatory studies. Security concerns were also not taken fully into account. The indicators were not developed fully at project design though this is due in part to the demand-driven nature of the investments under Components A and B. However, indicators with baselines for Components C and D could have been developed since they were not demand-driven.

Quality-at-Entry Rating: Moderately Satisfactory

b. Quality of supervision:
There was good continuity in terms of supervision of the project. There was a change of task team leader (TTL) in 2006 and some changes in the management team but these did not impact institutional memory. As the new TTL was based in the region close to the project, this change resulted in more continuous support to the client.


The Bank used a socio-economic survey in its economic analysis as well as a beneficiary survey to gauge the impact of the project.

Following the mid-term review, the project was restructured with a view to keeping the implementation targets on track. The reallocation of funds closed off components that were experiencing implementation difficulties (Component C), or were thought to be less relevant to achievement of the objectives (Component D), and bolstered components considered essential to achievement of the project objectives (Components A and B).

There were a number of outstanding safeguards issues at project closure, including medical waste (see Section 11a, below).

Quality of Supervision Rating: Moderately Satisfactory

Overall Bank Performance Rating: Moderately Satisfactory

9. Assessment of Borrower Performance:

a. Government Performance:
The Government was pro-active in requesting restructuring of the project during the mid-term review in 2008 due to the problems facing Components C and D. As mentioned in Section 2d, above, the Government financed rehabilitation of 71 km of the Kasomeno-Kasenga portion of national road RN5 with its own funds.


The Government committed to financing the resettlement action plan (RAP) for national road RN2 which was originally planned to be covered by IDA funding (see Sections 2d and 8b, above), but which could not be so covered since Bank procedures no longer allow cash financing of resettlement activities (ICR, page 40).

There were some shortcomings. First, the Government had committed to financing an ineligible expenditure (due to a contract which was terminated due to non-performance). By the time of completion of the ICR, the corresponding amount had not yet been reimbursed to IDA.

Second, a government agency (Office des Routes) considerably underestimated costs for rehabilitation of roads. This turned out to be a major factor in cost overruns and project extensions.

Government Performance Rating: Moderately Satisfactory

b. Implementing Agency Performance:
There were three implementing agencies: Unité de Coordination des Projets (UCoP), Bureau Central de Coordination (BCECO), and Urban Rehabilitation Management Firm (URMF).


UCoP completed project activities while limiting its operating costs to 6% of total project funds (according to the ICR, 5% is normally acceptable). This is considered reasonable since most supervision activities had to be done by airplane due to the geographic isolation of the project site for roads construction (ICR, p. 14). Infrastructure investments were transferred to sector ministries or decentralized administration. There was, however, one case of an ineligible expenditure (see Section 9a, above) due to a void bank guarantee.

BCECO acted as a procurement agent for all contracts under Components A and C. There were shortcomings for Component A related to contract management, works supervision and reporting on indicators. There was not enough of a focus on sustainability of investments. The ICR notes that BCECO could have improved the quality of works by carrying out more regular site visits from the main office.

URMF was slow to mobilize personnel which resulted in slow start-up of activities under Component B. There was a lack of application of contractual clauses in terms of payment and reimbursement of advances and retention of guarantees. The ICR also mentions that more regular site visits could have improved the quality of works.

There were a number of outstanding safeguards issues at project closure.

Implementing Agency Performance Rating: Moderately Unsatisfactory

Overall Borrower Performance Rating: Moderately Unsatisfactory

10. M&E Design, Implementation, & Utilization:

a. M&E Design:
M&E indicators were not developed fully at project design. This was partly due to the demand-driven nature of the investments under Components A and B. However, indicators with baselines for Components C and D could have been developed since they were not demand-driven. The technical annex of the MRP specified that the indicators should measure : "(i) the increased quality and coverage of services available in each targeted urban area, and (ii) a decrease of transport costs to reconnected areas."

One of the implementing agencies, Unité de Coordination des Projets, was given responsibility for follow-up on results and given training for M&E.

b. M&E Implementation:
The M&E framework was not fully developed until the mid-term review in November 2008. Investments under Components A and B were specified with indicators, baselines, outputs and outcomes. The MRP mentioned that improved transportation should reduce commodity prices, but this was not followed-up by any comparison of prices before and after the project.

The Borrowers ICR notes that BCECO and URMF had difficulty in monitoring project indicators since they had limited experience in on-site supervision (ICR, p. 41).

There are inconsistencies in the ICR in reporting of indicators. The most significant of these involves reporting on the indicator for length of roads rehabilitated which is an important indicator for achievement of the second project objective. Page ix of the ICR reports roads rehabilitated as a total of 360 km while page 23 reports rehabilitation of roads as 390 km (for national road RN6) and 208 km (for national road RN5) which totals 598 km. This was subsequently clarified by the project team, according to whom 598 km refers to the total length of both national roads, parts of which were rehabilitated.

There was a Beneficiary Survey conducted in June 2012 on 57 sub-projects (out of 125) with a "representative sample of cities, sector and components" (ICR, p. 32). Little information is provided on the survey's methodology.

a. M&E Utilization:
Following the mid-term review, M&E data was used to make sure implementation of the physical works was on track. This led to the discovery that contractors for Component C were not performing. As a result, the project was restructured, Component C closed and funds reallocated.

M&E Quality Rating: Modest

11. Other Issues:

a. Safeguards:
The project was classified as Category "B" for Environmental Assessment purposes. According to the PAD, five safeguard policies were triggered: OP 4.01 Environmental Assessment, OP 4.04 Natural Habitats, OP 4.11 Physical Cultural Resources, OP 4.10 Indigenous Peoples, and OP 4.12 Involuntary Resettlement. However, during implementation no situation occurred to trigger any activity related to the policies on physical cultural resources and natural habitats

Environment. An environmental impact assessment was prepared for Component C. An environmental and social management framework was prepared for Components A, B, and D. The mid-term review revealed that the works contracts did not include funding to mitigate environmental impacts. The problem of medical wastes from health facilities funded by the project was not fully taken into account. According to the project team: "Initially construction of incinerators in the medical centers being rehabilitated was not part of the works. During Bank supervision missions, it was recommended to correct this situation. The incinerators were constructed but some of them were not functional due to design shortcomings and poor quality of the works. These issues have been addressed by the government and all these facilities are functional." An international environmental consulting firm was hired to train staff of Unité de Coordination des Projets, contractors, and Bureau Central de Coordination on environmental and social management as well as on Bank safeguard procedures. The UCoP developed a plan to finance activities under Component A to address the outstanding issues. Environmental management plans were prepared for each 30 km segment of the roads. However, the beneficiary survey revealed that "no adequate solution has been found to the problem of medical waste." (ICR, p. 9). The Borrower's ICR also points out "inadequate monitoring of environmental and social aspects during construction" (ICR, p. 40). The ICR contains no statement to the effect that there was compliance with the Bank's environmental safeguards policies, and based on the information provided, it cannot be concluded that there was such compliance.

Resettlement. A resettlement policy framework was prepared for the project. Resettlement Action Plans (RAPs) were prepared for each 30 km segment of the roads financed under the project. A total of 627 project affected persons were compensated. In addition, an ex-post RAP was prepared by the Recipient for the national road RN2 which had been rehabilitated under the earlier Bank-financed Emergency Economic and Social Reunification Support project. It identified the need for compensation payments of US$202,090. When the project under review was restructured for the third and final time in February 2012, it was decided that the project would finance these payments. In the event, this was not possible due to changes in Bank procedures whereby cash compensation paid from Bank funds was no longer permitted. The Government, therefore, implemented the RN2 RAP and has currently paid 61% of the total amount due to 35 project affected persons. The ICR (p. 9) reports that "[the mid-term review] revealed that project affected persons resettled due to the road construction were not adequately compensated."

Indigenous Peoples. An indigenous peoples plan was prepared and disclosed to NGOs, academics, Pygmy associations and news agencies. No information is provided on its implementation.

b. Fiduciary Compliance:
Financial Management. Until the mid-term review, UCoP had insufficient staff in the financial department. This situation was corrected after the review. There were problems related to a contract signed for road works which was canceled in 2010 due to non-performance. An advance payment of US$1.4 million had been made and had not yet been reimbursed by the time the ICR was completed.

All audit reports were submitted on time. However, the latest audit report was qualified, though the ICR has no details on the qualification other than, "no accountability issues were flagged" (ICR, p. 10).

Procurement. The delegated contract managers (BCECO and URMF) had experience in World Bank procurement procedures (though not so much in supervision of works). A technical audit carried out in May 2012 confirmed that procurement methods and contract management agreements were complied with. The ICR (p. 10) reports that Bank procurement procedures were complied with. Other than the canceled contract mentioned above, there were no reported cases of misprocurement.

Disbursement. Not all components were fully disbursed at project closing. Component C had disbursed 92% of total investment costs and Component D was essentially undisbursed before they were closed after the first restructuring. The corresponding amounts were reallocated to other Components.

c. Unintended Impacts (positive or negative):

d. Other:



12. Ratings:

ICR
IEG Review
Reason for Disagreement/Comments
Outcome:
Moderately Satisfactory
Moderately Satisfactory
 
Risk to Development Outcome:
High
High
 
Bank Performance:
Moderately Satisfactory
Moderately Satisfactory
 
Borrower Performance:
Moderately Satisfactory
Moderately Unsatisfactory
There were significant shortcomings in implementing agency performance (see Section 9b, above). 
Quality of ICR:
 
Satisfactory
 
NOTES:
- When insufficient information is provided by the Bank for IEG to arrive at a clear rating, IEG will downgrade the relevant ratings as warranted beginning July 1, 2006.
- The "Reason for Disagreement/Comments" column could cross-reference other sections of the ICR Review, as appropriate.

13. Lessons:
The following lessons are taken from the ICR with some adaptation of language:

1. The M&E framework should be specified as much as possible at the design stage. Indicators for Components A and B could not be specified early on since the investments were demand-driven, but indicators for Components C and D could have been specified and were not.

2. Sustainability needs to be addressed on an ongoing basis. Sustainability was not adequately addressed in this project, and no provision was made for operations and maintenance of much of the financed infrastructure, especially roads.

3. If planned studies are not undertaken, then important implementation issues may not be addressed. There was not enough time to utilize the funds in the PPF for preparatory studies which may have pointed out some of the current issues in the project, such as under-met demand for schools and hospitals.

4. Inadequate financial and institutional provision for maintenance will undermine the sustainability of investments. In this case, no proper provision has been made for adequate maintenance of an important percentage of the infrastructure investments financed.

14. Assessment Recommended?

No

15. Comments on Quality of ICR:

The ICR covered most topics well, especially achievement of the project objectives in terms of outputs and outcomes. The Borrower's ICR was also included and provided a more critical perspective of the project. However, some topics were not addressed at all (disbursement) or barely covered (M&E).

The presentation of baselines in Table F of the Data Sheet is misleading since, in several cases, it gives the impression of a baseline of zero, whereas the actual baseline is zero additions (to numbers of children in school, numbers accessing health services, kilometers of roads rehabilitated etc.). More information on how travel time savings were calculated, and on the socio-economic study carried out along National Road RN5, would have been helpful. There was inconsistency in reporting the project development objectives and errors in the restructuring table in terms of dates. There was some inconsistent information on indicators with values in the tables on PDO/Intermediate Indicators not matching values in the tables in Annex 2: Outputs by Component. There was no statement as to whether Bank safeguards of fiduciary policies were complied with. Auditors qualifications were not discussed. There were several typographical errors, particularly in the early pages of the ICR.

a. Quality of ICR Rating: Satisfactory

(ICRR-Rev6INV-Jun-2011)
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