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Niu 3400 LD MSP: Niue's Sustainable Land Management
Commissioning Unit: Samoa
Evaluation Plan: 2008-2012
Evaluation Type: Project
Completion Date: 09/2009
Unit Responsible for providing Management Response: Samoa
Documents Related to overall Management Response:
 
1. Recommendation: Project Management Multiple committments of PMU members, this caused delays in the project and lack of management Recommendations 1. More careful thought needs to be given to who takes on the Project Manager role in complex projects like this that require significant management and oversight. 2. Options for delegating more authority to project staff should be considered. 3. There should be the flexibility to change the management of the project if required. 4. Closer involvement of UNDP in direct project management could be considered.
Management Response: [Added: 2011/07/18]

Rec.1. Agree. However with the limited number of human resources available in Niue and with experiences we have in the past, such a role involves people who are multitasked and involved in core services at a higher management level working for Government. Management at the director level relates also to approval of all department financial transactions. Rec.2. Agree. Note however that this has worked in both directions. A large delegation of authority has resulted in the exisiting outcome. Rec.3. Agree. Due to the nature of a limited pool of human resources available in a small place like Niue, small administration, and competing activities across 3 major sectors is challenging. This needs to have a strategy from the beginning. Re.4.Agree. Theres a need to strengthen the link between UNDP and Project in order for smooth implementation of activities and management of project. In hindsight, and relevant to many projects being undertaken by the department, part time engagement of accounting services would be worth consideration from the beginning.

Key Actions:

2. Recommendation: Project coordinator Lack of training and induction on the part of UNDP and the role of the Technical Assistant not being fully developed Recommendations 1. Project Coordinators should receive a thorough induction from UNDP staff either in country or more appropriately at the MCO Office in Apia. 2. Once a coordinator is selected UNDP should work with them to prepare an individualised training and support plan. This would match the person specifications in the TOR with the CV of the coordinator, identifying the specific areas in which he/she would require training or backstopping and defining a programme to provide this. 3. If an appropriate coordinator cannot be found following an application process other options should be considered. 4. Review coordinator?s appointment after 6 and 12 months based on a specific performance agreement. 5. If a change in a key project officer occurs every effort should be made to ensure a smooth transition by having the previous incumbent return to assist the new appointee for a period. 6. The new Coordinator should receive full induction in UNDP procedures in Apia as soon as possible. 7. It is recommended the previous and new Coordinator meet to review the many spreadsheets and work plans on the laptop to identify the key documents for ongoing use by the coordination team.
Management Response: [Added: 2011/07/18]

Rec.1 Agree Rec.2. Agree Rec.3 Agree. As long as the person receive thorough lead up training and fulfilling the first 2 recommendations. Rec.4.Agree, though again noting the limited availability of high caliber individuals to draw on. Changes in this position require considerable time and effort to bring someone new up to speed, without guarantee of success. Other work is put on hold to achieve this. Rec.5.Agree. Depending if former officer is still on island and not overseas. This was tried with SLM case but not successfully. Rec.6.Agree. This was earmarked to take place of what had happened to the Niue SLM Project with the changes of project personnel, however this did not take place due to time constraint as we were pushing for an appropriate time together with the demand to implement and deliver the project activities on time. Rec.7. Agree. This was very important at the time. The meeting took place between former and current coordinator.

Key Actions:

3. Recommendation: Steering committee Frequency has decreased and attendance of members is poor Recommendations 1. The Steering Committee should be strengthened and meet regularly during the balance of the project ? at least quarterly but with additional meetings if required. 2. An effort should be made to increase attendance to what it was at the outset with proxies required in the absence of representatives. 3. A review of representation should be undertaken once the work plan is revised to ensure that those responsible for different activities are present. An invitation should be provided to the Treasury Department, as recommended following the first audit. The merit of External Affairs representation should be assessed. 4. The committee should establish a set format to be reported in the minutes which includes: a. a clear listing of action points with a name(s) against each of the person assigned the task and a time frame b. a review of the action points from the previous meeting ? identifying those completed and explaining the reasons for any not completed a proposed date for the next meeting c. updates from the different agencies referring to the specific activities in the revised project work plan that they are responsible for d. acceptance (or otherwise) of quarterly reports, financial reports and draft reports prepared by the PMU (as in TOR). 5. Minutes of meetings should be kept in a single file along with any reports tabled. 6. The committee needs to formerly elect a Chair at its next meeting. Sauni Tongatule has fulfilled that role on an ?Acting? basis for some time since Bill Motufoou lost his role as Minister for DAFF (see 5.2.7). 7. The Minister of DAFF is invited to join the Steering Committee.
Management Response: [Added: 2011/07/18]

Rec.1. Agree. This was built into the current work plan and a steering committee meeting is scheduled for each quarter. Rec.2. Agree. All stakeholders are always informed and to send a representative on their behalf if absent. Again participants in the steering committee have multiple commitments which distract from meetings. Recognize however that there is room for improvement in this area. Rec.3. Agree. Worked much closer with treasury since the MTR, including inviting to attend SC. Rec.4. Agree. This was the intended way of operation, similar to other projects undertaken in the department. Updates from departments is undertaken at all steering com meetings with regard to the activities specific to their input and outcomes they are responsible for. Rec.5. Agree. Rec.6. Agree. Sauni Tongatule was the elected vice chair in line with Minister Motufoou?s guidance, but director DAFF fills in in Sauni?s absence. Rec.7. The Minister was usually informed but most times he?s unable to attend due to other commitments.

Key Actions:

4. Recommendation: Project support outside Niue The Global Support Unit has played a minor role for the project because it was ceased end of 2008. They ensured support for the development of NAP but it never happened. The GSU did produce a Resource Kit for monitoring, evaluation & reporting for Sustainable Land Management in SIDS Countries in 2006 but it is unclear if Niue has used this. What happened? As for regional support, some worksops have been carried out Recommendations 1. UNDP-GEF should honour apparent commitments to provide resources to regional organisations to support countries in project implementation. (Applicable both to SLM and to NCSA). 2. The Project team needs to make more use of technical experts from regional agencies to complete the project. 3. Linkages should be established with other country SLM projects at the Coordinator level.
Management Response: [Added: 2011/07/18]

Niue developed the NAP back in 2004. However, the Integrated Financial Strategy Component ( IFS) was not part of the NAP at the time . A Regional Training was conducted in 2009 with this IFS in Fiji where the Project Manager and Coordinator attended, but we still need assistance with realigning or incorporating of this IFS into our current NAP. The current PMU with the changes of Project personnel have limited knowledge with the Resource Kit for monitoring, evaluation & reporting for SLM that was developed back in 2006. Rec. 1.Agree Rec.2. Agree. We have in the past seek technical assistance form SPC Land Resources Division. Planning and coordination with regional agencies requires forward planning in most cases, quick response at short request is not usually possible. Rec.3. Agree. Only been undertaken to date during regional meetings of coordinators, but no networks set up.

Key Actions:

5. Recommendation: Outcome 1 Farm development Problems with the leasing of land Problems with finding labour to work on the farm. It has been unattended for one year A detailed plan for th use of the farm has to be developed What has happened to this after the evaluation?? What has been planted since September 2009? Is it working? Recommendations 1. A detailed farm plan is produced as soon as possible. 2. It is recommended that support is sought from SPC to provide a specialist to advise on the farm plan, to consider the economic return of different potential crops, varieties available, etc. Demonstration activities Many workshops for farmers and training material produced Reserach activities Not done, not enough time for results Equipment No detail provided by ProDoc. Problems with availability of machinery for the project because it is used by the Government. Problems with storage The fish waste mulcher not used. Has the fish factory re-opened? Recommendations 1. A decision on whether the fish waste mulcher should be sold should be made in October. 2. Trials need to be carried out shortly to prove the merit of the large grass harvester concept. End of project scenario How to deal with leases and benefits from crops? What role does the Government play once the project is over?
Management Response: [Added: 2011/07/18]

The Lease Agreement Document has been finalised and signed by the two Levekis in the last quarter of 2010. A $90NZD per acre per annum was the lease rate agreed for a period of 10 years and subject for review after 3 years. The farm has been planted since then with:Vegetable Demo Plot, Muccuna area, Banana(Plantain Plot), Nonu, Passion fruit Demo Block Rec.1 Agreed. A farm plan was produced at the time with assistance from DJLS(Justice Lands and Survey Dept), utilizing the current land map that is covered under the land lease agreement. However, the downscaling of the project area has changed the plan and space now is confine to the area that is covered by the land lease. Efforts have been made for EDPSU and Mutalau VC to develop a business plan for the farm. The VC have advised they have a business plan but have not shared this. Efforts were also made to use UNDP CCSP village PRA process to develop a plan that is itegrated with the larger village development plan, however the VC decided to decline this offer. Rec.2.Agreed. We did have some assistance from the SPC Economist that was here to do some work on the Venezuela Project. Demonstration Activities: We have had some training in the past with Agroforestry,Composting, GIS and maintenance of small engines/equipments for farming. However, during 2010, much of the activities were very much based on the Land Lease Issue which took up the whole year to be approved and was finalized in the Land Court in October 2010, and signed by the Landowners in November 2010. Research Activities: We did engage with some Research Activities with the use of muccuna cover crop as a means of soil improvement/rejuvenation process but have yet to do soil sampling to re test the soil fertility status in comparison to the original results that was done by Hills Laboratory back in 2007. The use of locally made compost material on bananas, passion fruit and fish silage on the limes proved good growth rates but pests still remains to be a challenge. With the newly setup vegetable demo block, we will be looking at engaging more with demonstration and research activities paying more emphasis to organic based farming methods. Equipment: In the past with the limited pool of machinery available to Government, a backhoe/excavator that was co-financed through SLM project and Government still remains as a backup in emergency situations like the Power cable drenching and piping for water. This in case is usually hired out by the Department due to the high demand of such machinery. The fish factory is currently still un-operational. Rec. 1. Authority has been given by the Steering Committee to Mr Ernest Nemaia(Former DAFF Director and SLM Project Adviser )now living in Auckland to sell the Fish Mulcher to recover some project funds. The Fish mulcher is still in storage in Auckland. Are considering the option of offering this to another SLM project in neighboring countries with fish processors. Rec.2. The grass harvester was earmarked to be utilized at the airport grounds due to the large grassland area when mowed. End of Project Scenario: The Government is looking at a 10 year term lease subject for review after 3 years. The original plan is for Government to Sublease Farm to the Village Council after the Project is completed. Currently the village have several ventures that are working in line with the SLM Farm. The farm in terms of coconuts will be supplying dry nuts to the Village coconut oil processing plant, and crops and vegetables will be used for tourist functions currently set up under the village Ecotourism Project. However, the Government will still continue to support the farm after the project ends in terms of technical support during the transition phase (3 years).

Key Actions:

6. Recommendation: Outcome 2 Capacities for knowledge development & management for SLM 5 activities. Not much had been done by the time of this evaluation. 1. Participatory assessments of the sustainability of land use systems and functionality of ecosystem services 2. Knowledge sharing, information resources and access to these improved 3. Enhanced institutional/stakeholder capacities in the use of integrated land information systems/GIS/remote sensing for SLM and enhancement/maintenance of ecosystem functionality 4. Land Information Systems for SLM developed and operational 5. Monitoring and evaluation systems for SLM developed and operational Some of these are seen as totally impossible to develop. What has been done? Recommendations 1. Consider dropping activity 2.5.1 and developing guidelines for 2.5.2 and 2.5.3 and seek advice from SPC on this.
Management Response: [Added: 2011/07/18]

5 Activities: 1.Not done as yet. 2.Knowledge sharing is limited other than the project training in the past with soil rehabilitation/soil improvement methods and composting. 3.Basic training conducted by Justice Department Lands and Survey. 4.Land Information System is spearheaded by Justice, Lands an Survey Department. Several trainings have conducted in the past but LIS for SLM have yet to be developed. 5.In the past, SPC Land Resources personnel under the DSAP Project offered to assist us with the M&E Framework for the farm development and experiments but have yet to develop also. Rec.1.Agreed

Key Actions:

7. Recommendation: Outcome 3 Resources are mobilized for the implementation of Niue?s completed NAP Significant assistance expected from the Global Support Unit never happened Recommendations 1. The Coordinator and Deputy Director DAFF should meet with the Head of EPDSU to review the activities in this outcome in light of the recent workshop. The development of a single project as outlines should be investigated and initiated urgently if supported.
Management Response: [Added: 2011/07/18]

Still need assistance from GSU for the implementation of the NAP. Rec.1 Agreed. The Integrated Financial Strategy(IFS) still need assistance with the incorporation of this IFS into the NAP.

Key Actions:

8. Recommendation: Outcome 4 SLM principles are mainstreamed into national policies, plans and legislation What has happened with this outcome? It was half way through at the moment of the Review but, where is it now?
Management Response: [Added: 2011/07/18]

Currently under this outcome a National Organic Farming Policy with emphasis on Sustainable Land Management Principles has been developed by end of last year. Some activities such as a the Land Clearing code of practice under this Outcome will also be developed during the 2nd -3rd Quarter 2011.

Key Actions:

9. Recommendation: Financial management and reporting 6 moths delay for funds release from UNDP Quarterly report takes a lot of time
Management Response: [Added: 2011/07/18]

In the beginning of the Project, there was a delay with the funds from UNDP. The new Financial reporting system HACT with the use of Face Forms should help in the process. Quarterly reports have been processed on quarterly bases.

Key Actions:

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