Strengthening Peasant Movements: evaluation of the Mozambique Development Programme, 2012-2015, of Norwegian People's Aid

Strengthening Peasant Movements: evaluation of the Mozambique Development Programme, 2012-2015, of Norwegian People's Aid

Norwegian People’s Aid (NPA) is the Norwegian labour movement’s humanitarian organisation for solidarity. NPA started working in Mozambique in the 1980s. Since the early 2000s, the main NPA partners in Mozambique have been UNAC (União Nacional de Camponeses), ORAM (Associação Rural de Ajuda Mutua) and some of their province-based delegations and chapters. This report evaluates the activities in Mozambique under the Multi-Annual Cooperation Agreement for 2012-2015 between NORAD and NPA. The report is based on document studies, interviews and field visits to Maputo (capital), Tete (province) and Niassa (province). Some village associations and women groups were visited, and representatives of other international NGOs working with some of the same Mozambican partners were interviewed.

The report finds that NPA’s programme in Mozambique is of high relevance to the current context. Mozambique needs to shift its investment and development priorities, and thereby undertake a redistribution of its national resources, towards agriculture and in particular to the family-based smallholder sector. This makes well-organized advocacy and lobbying on behalf of the rural and peasant population, which is the main objective of the NPA programme, a key issue in Mozambique. NPA’s partners, in particular UNAC and its provincial and local organisations, are unique in this part of the world by representing rural, genuine and clear constituencies in terms of rural mass membership and internal formal democracy.

The programme has achieved mixed results in comparison with the plan and what could be expected. Outcome area I, ‘Rural men and women claiming rights’, has still a long way to go. Outcome area II, ‘Organizational development for advocacy’, has to a medium extent achieved the planned results. There is a positive trend towards the election of women in leadership positions at local, provincial and national levels. Moreover, the results are quite impressive regarding advocacy outcomes beyond the community-level, e.g. at national and even transnational levels, Advocacy against (or towards) the so-called ProSavana program, a programme for large-scale agriculture development, stands out. NPA’s “added value” is considered to be very high, particularly when it comes to deepening consciousness of gender issues. However, the monitoring and reporting system of the partners are very much activity-centred, opposite to results-centred. The high responsiveness to NPA are not matched by the quality of the information collected and by the capacity to report on results/ changes resulting from the programme. This shows that the potential for cooperation and synergies between NPA, UNAC and ORAM is not taken care of well enough.

Several recommendations are presented, among them: a) The emphasis must continue to be on organizational development for improved advocacy work. This is particularly important if, or when, a merger with the more productivity-oriented agriculture program of the Norwegian embassy takes place. b)The advocacy work at the community level, “to make men and women in local associations claim their rights”, should be strengthened. That includes paying more attention, and allocating more resources to, the ‘basic’ work of legalizing associations, producing land certificates, and promoting women’s organizational and economic empowerment.

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