End of Programme Cycle Evaluation of Strengthening Rule of Law Programme

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Evaluation Plan:
2018-2022, Pakistan
Evaluation Type:
Final Project
Planned End Date:
05/2019
Completion Date:
02/2019
Status:
Completed
Management Response:
No
Evaluation Budget(US $):
40,000

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Title End of Programme Cycle Evaluation of Strengthening Rule of Law Programme
Atlas Project Number: 00061652
Evaluation Plan: 2018-2022, Pakistan
Evaluation Type: Final Project
Status: Completed
Completion Date: 02/2019
Planned End Date: 05/2019
Management Response: Yes
UNDP Signature Solution:
  • 1. Governance
Corporate Outcome and Output (UNDP Strategic Plan 2018-2021)
  • 1. Output 2.2.3 Capacities, functions and financing of rule of law and national human rights institutions and systems strengthened to expand access to justice and combat discrimination, with a focus on women and other marginalised groups
SDG Goal
  • Goal 16. Promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provide access to justice for all and build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels
  • Goal 5. Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls
SDG Target
  • 16.3 Promote the rule of law at the national and international levels and ensure equal access to justice for all
  • 16.6 Develop effective, accountable and transparent institutions at all levels
  • 5.1 End all forms of discrimination against all women and girls everywhere
Evaluation Budget(US $): 40,000
Source of Funding: Donors
Evaluation Expenditure(US $): 44,516
Joint Programme: No
Joint Evaluation: No
Evaluation Team members:
Name Title Email Nationality
Shafqat Munir Dr PAKISTAN
Ehtisham Anwar Dr PAKISTAN
GEF Evaluation: No
Key Stakeholders: UNDP; Home and P&D Departments; Central Police Office; Peshawar High Court; KPJA; SDC; DfID; EU; US-INL
Countries: PAKISTAN
Lessons
Findings
Recommendations
1

Continued awareness drives

The process by which citizens acquire information on laws, rights and accessing legal aid services must be improved, particularly for women. Although UNDP, with assistance from CSO’s, has made strides in addressing this issue, there is room for further improvement. This is especially true at the village level where people experience geographical, social and cultural barriers. More focused efforts are also required to disseminate information in all the local languages and through all knowledge mediums including print and digital means. Access to key information will increase the citizens’ trust in available legal support services in justice system.

2

Continued support to LADs

LADs proved to be very effective in increasing access to justice; hence it is recommended that support to these services should continue and further extension to the province may be considered.

3

Scholarships

Considerable women lawyers have joined the legal sector because of the scholarship initiative introduced in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. An increase in the women lawyers will in turn pave the way for increased access to justice for women given Khyber Pakhtunkhwa’s cultural context and gender segregation norms. As the southern region of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa was added later into the SRLP, the programme should continue to support women law students to join the legal sector. It is recommended that scholarships should be concentrated in this area and focused towards incentivising women in these districts to continue legal education in addition to its expansion to other parts of the province.

It is recommended that financial support should be concentrated in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and focused towards incentivizing women to continue legal education. As a Women Lawyer's Forum helped women lawyers to stay connected, the programme should continue support to the forum by expanding into the entire province.

4

Proper check and balance upon the cases.

A proper check and balance system should be in placed to refer cases to only those lawyers who are competent, willing and committed to provide legal aid to the poor and indigent litigants.

5

Proper State sponsored legal aid system for the poor and indigent litigants

A proper State sponsored legal aid system is the sustainable solution to lack of access to justice to the poor and indigent litigants, therefore long-term policy solutions should be explored by working with the entities at Federal and Provincial level.

6

Activation of other Legal Aid Mechanisms:

Apart from working with the Bar Council and Associations, options of working with other available legal aid mechanisms, e.g. the District Legal Empowerment Committees constituted under the Law and Justice Commission of Pakistan should be activated to share the load. 

7

Support for Bar Council and Bar Associations

The Bar Council and Bar Association were crucial in the provision of facilities such as books, bar rooms and furniture to the courts. Women lawyers and litigants especially benefitted from the support of the facilities provided like separate bar rooms, washrooms and sitting areas in selected areas. However, not all the districts have received these facilities. Support for the Bar Council and Associations should, therefore, continue with routine checks to ensure accountability and further facilities for women.

8

Support for Bar Associations

Bar Associations have been supportive of the trainings for young lawyers and have expressed the need for further training for their lawyers.

9

Strengthen Coordination with Bar Associations and Bar Council

The Bar Council and Bar Associations can play  pivotal role in the institutionalization and disbursement of legal aid services and therefore, should be viewed as potential legal aid service delivery partners. However, Bar Associations from the region still lack the capacity to efficiently manage these services. This situation requires attention and consideration to sensitize them through continued orientation and training. There is a need to strengthen Bar Council and Bar Associations, specifically their quality assurance and disciplinary functions. Being breading grounds for the entire justice and rule of law sector, focus should also be given to the law schools by engaging law students in clinical legal education, development of courses under LLB curriculum like optional and mandatory courses like ADR, Human Rights, and legal drafting, etc.

10

Awareness Raising

There is a need to disseminate information regarding ADR forums, to ensure the access to dispute resolution. The ADR mechanism can be promoted by Civil Society Organizations through advocacy and public awareness campaigns by highlighting their purpose and utility.

11

Capacity Building of Members

The program may be designed and conduct extensive trainings for the DRC members on fundamental rights, ADR skills and laws and procedures. Trainings should be held on a regular basis and based on their level of qualifications.

12

Capacity Building of Paralegals

Paralegals should be cognizant about the UN Principles and guidelines of legal aid services because the instruments shall be considered and implemented in national and local contexts. Therefore, trainings by UNDP and CSOs  should be held on a regular basis.

13

ADR Legislation for Khyber Pakhtunkhwa

The Case Management rules for district judiciary developed by the Peshawar High Court provide room for effective implementation of court annexed ADR. However as recommended in the National Conference on ADR and other policy dialogues, the province needs a separate ADR act similar to those enacted at the federal level and Government of Sindh and Punjab.

14

Reforming statutory ADR mechanisms

Though the DRC provide effective ADR services, the rules and regulations should be amended to increase the representation of women, comply with mediation standards, develop a referral and monitoring system, include principles of ‘do no harm’, clear guidelines on tenure and selection and criteria for members.

15

Devolution to Union Council level

As per the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Police Act of 2017, DRCs need to be formed at the Tehsil and Union Council level. This would provide greater access to the DRCs in remote areas.

16

Promotion of referral system

Considering their pivotal position in the justice system, some Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) should be developed that allow judges and lawyers to refer cases to DRCs. Both judges and lawyers should be encouraged to propagate the use of ADR forums to further emphasize their importance as a means to reduce burden off the formal judicial system

17

The representation of the marginalized

Those segments of the population that have been and continue to be marginalized should have adequate representation. Since a substantial portion of cases relate to women, DRCs should have 30 percent women representation and 5 percent representation of minorities where applicable.

18

Uniformity in Documentation and record-keeping

There should be a system in all DRCs, where they should adapt a standardized system of maintaining records of all cases received in the DRCs.

19

Operational expenses

The government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa should allocate funds to facilitate the functioning of the ADR forums. In order for this to happen, the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Police Act 2017 can be amended to make a provision for this fund whose amount may be decided by the government. The district police office can act as auditors and custodians of the funds allocated for operational expenses of the DRCs.

20

Strengthening the Paralegal Networks

The SRLP has established two paralegal networks in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa in collaboration with local civil society organizations. The paralegal networks lack adequate resources for promoting and developing the paralegal services. The paralegal networks should be provided further support for developing national and international linkages, empowering grass roots paralegals and facilitating access to justice for the most marginalized.

21

Continuation of trainings

A continuation of the already successful trainings should be extended to the whole of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Moreover, capacity-building of Judicial officers and court staff in cyber-crimes, forensics, intellectual property rights, ethics, gender, juvenile and financial crimes should also be considered.

22

Strengthening the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Judicial Academy

For the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Judicial Academy, a modernized evaluation system should be appropriated, as it would allow the judicial officers to take advantage of advancements in technology. Furthermore, the institute should be supported in creating linkages with formal justice institutions through seminars, collaborative workshops and joint efforts. Linkages with national and international Judicial Academies are also suggested. The academy must serve as a hub for addressing problems faced by judiciary and courts. Judicial Research culture shall be inculcated in the Judicial Officers thereby the Research Wing established at Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Judicial Academy needs to be strengthened to advise policy makers on various current issues and way forward.

23

Improve Infrastructure and provision of basic facilities to litigants;

The goal set for judicial infrastructure is driven by the inadequate facilities available to courts for delivery of services. The aim is to ensure provision of purpose-built infrastructure to promote conducive environment to courts for improving service delivery. The SRLP has provided support to 7 districts of Malakand Division, now on the request of PHC planning to engage in the whole of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and work on the concept of modern tehsils.

24

Need for human capital

Judges complained about a lack of human resources. They stated that a shortage of qualified people severely limits the ability of the courts to perform its judicial role effectively.  Some judges pointed out that in the absence of available court staff, they are expected to fulfil the absent staff member’s duties and responsibilities, in addition to fulfilling their own duties. As a result, they are routinely overburdened with work. A Sessions Judge in Peshawar summarizes the predicaments of the courts as “Too many cases, not enough judges, so the backlog creeps up.” Hence, there is a need to recruit qualified and trained staff as well as increase the human capital to tackle the immense backlog and pendency of cases filed before the courts. Additionally, priority should be given to inducting judges and re-establishing separate benches to deal with cases of women and vulnerable groups

25

Reconstitution of benches for women and vulnerable groups

Under the directive of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Rule of Law Roadmap, the Peshawar High Court set up designated benches for women and other vulnerable groups that would facilitate the prompt disposal of cases. Unfortunately, these benches were retracted. The reasons for which are unclear. It is recommended that these benches should be reconstituted to address urgent cases of women and vulnerable groups.

26

Addressing complaints in Police trainings

For the police, a localized training programme, with closer proximity to trainees is recommended whilst ensuring trainings are conducted in the local languages to increase participation and retention of training content. Moreover, a dedicated continuous development training programme rather than brief, short-lived workshops should be developed to ensure standardization for learning, provide follow-up support for retention and encourage accountability by ensuring that the trainees put their new skill sets to practice in their relevant work. Finally, it is recommended that up-to-date skills development material should be routinely disbursed, and training courses should be frequently held in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

The database and software developed for the police should be utilized to the maximum to increase police efficiency, response and transparency. The community policing concept should be extended to other parts of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, enabling the police and communities to come closer and starting trust on one another.

The MPSs have proved to be effective but to increase the effectiveness of the GRDs, there is a need to take up the matter at the policy level with the police senior management and government; to deploy women police personnel on all GRDs and also encourage women join police service by incentivising the police service for women and provision of facilities for women police personnel in MPSs.

27

Capacity-building of Prosecutors

It is recommended that prosecutors be facilitated via the establishment of libraries or a centrally accessible e-library to help them continuously update their knowledge and promote record-keeping and documentation activities.

Linkages with international and national prosecution services can improve their service delivery and promote knowledge sharing amongst each other. Publishing of literature and reports should be promoted to make data and performance public. Additionally, establishment of basic infrastructure is needed efficiency which has been found lacking in certain districts.

28

Engagement with community

Local engagement with the police serves to increase the trust that communities have in their security forces and reduces the alienation. Most police officials support the idea that holding ‘Khulli Kacheri’ (joint community and police gatherings) to resolve community disputes is efficient and advantageous for the community. Similarly, PLCs have also been set up in police stations that can provide support in the mediation process within a community. Therefore, it is strongly suggested that police officials need to engage locals through aforementioned mediums and others as has been decreed by law under the Police Act, 2017.

29

Enforcement of Service Structure

The Swat forensic Lab is not operational due to the absence of a service structure. Consequently, it is recommended that a service structure be developed and notified. The responsibility and authority to ensure the constant functioning of the forensic laboratory can be delegated to junior officers.

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