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Final evaluation: Rule of Law partnership project
Commissioning Unit: Uzbekistan
Evaluation Plan: 2016-2020
Evaluation Type: Project
Completion Date: 11/2017
Unit Responsible for providing Management Response: Uzbekistan
Documents Related to overall Management Response:
 
1. Recommendation:

- UNDP should align future programming and support towards the realization of human rights in Uzbekistan, through criminal justice reform and enhanced access to justice. And indeed, there is growing recognition of increased space within which to strengthen fair trial standards and the right to petition.

- Building on UNDP’s work of the civil courts, greater awareness raising efforts may encourage claimants to bring local government entities to court for violations of their economic and social rights. Presently, these requests involve a petition for the courts to abolish the decision of the local government or a local official, often around housing, education and health. Legal aid assistance would be critical to strengthen the outcomes in this area, particularly around property use or confiscation.

Management Response: [Added: 2017/12/02]

Both criminal and administrative justice, as well as further improvement of procedural and substantial legislation in accordance with the international fair trial standards should be included in the next phase of the Rule of Law partnership project.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
To include activities related to criminal and administrative justice reform, as well as incorporation of best international standards of delivering justice in these proceedings to our new programming on rule of law for the period of 2018-2020. Underline these areas in talking points for high-level meetings with the Supreme court of the Republic of Uzbekistan.
[Added: 2017/12/02] [Last Updated: 2019/01/08]
Cluster on Good Governance, Policy and Communication 2018/12 Completed To support criminal and administrative justice reforms, UNDP ROL project provide expert advice and the best international practices to amends 3 Codes, 3 laws and 3 decrees of the Plenum of the Supreme Court and one Procedures . 11 info-graphics, 5 manuals and 4 handbooks have been prepared and disseminated to ensure the high level policy advocacy in this field. During May and July, 2018, training were held for judges, court employees and lawyers in the Ferghana, Namangan, Andijan, Sirdarya, Jizzakh and Tashkent regions. A total of 125 specialists, including 52 women, took part in these events; A media tour to the Zangiata inter-district civil court occurred in May. On September 25 the Supreme Court’s official website was launched, featuring a number of interactive services. 7 analytical papers, 5 concepts and 4 overview of foreign experience have been prepared. 3 Codes have been worked out: Economical procedural Code, Civil procedural code, Code of the Republic of Uzbekistan on administrative court procedure http://lex.uz/ru/search/all?form_id=3964 - Draft law on free legal aid - law ‘On mediation’ http://lex.uz/docs/3805229?twolang=true - The Decree of the Plenum of the Supreme Court ‘On Amending Some Resolutions of the Supreme Economic Court of Uzbekistan in the Light of Adopting the Economic Procedure Code’ - the law ‘On amending the administrative violations code and the criminal procedure code’ - The Decree of the Plenum of the Supreme Court ‘Peculiarities of hearing the administrative disputes arising out of public relations’ - The Decree of the Plenum of the Supreme Court ‘Some question of judicial practice on hearing administrative offences’ https://oliysud.uz/ History
2. Recommendation:

- Reportedly, there are new laws relating to women’s equality and domestic violence under consideration. UNDP Uzbekistan should be engaged with appropriate partners in ensuring these laws meet international standards, for example. Following the adoption of legislation, partners are identified to conduct awareness raising and provide legal aid assistance.

- Capacity building efforts must achieve a better balance between institutional support on the one side, and support to credible CSO and providers of legal aid, including the Tashkent State Law University, on the other. Awareness raising activities are also key going forward. The top-down push by the President for openness and transparency should be complemented by the increased understanding by rights holders in their rights, the President’s reform agenda, and the availability and functionality of ESUD.

- Among the most important partners to cultivate in any new programming efforts is the Tashkent State Law University, given its aim to ensure law students provide legal assistance to disadvantaged groups. Based on Presidential Decree 2932, 28 April 2017, the school must create legal clinics in 2 locations. One will open in “Student City” and be affiliated with both the MOJ and the Governor of Tashkent. The other will open at Tashkent TSU. Under supervision of the law school, the law students will focus on assisting the local populations with their justice needs. They will deploy 1000 student lawyers from 3rd and 4th years to provide legal aid. Legal aid provision, coupled with ESUD functionality and rights awareness campaigns may lead to significant and measurable gains in access to justice, helping Uzbekistan meet its pledges under Goal 16 of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

Management Response: [Added: 2017/12/02]

Good Governance Cluster and ROL project should enhance communication with interested national partners to support legal aid initiatives. Support to legal clinics should be reflected as a separate activity of next phase of the project.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
To prepare a separate plan of actions between Supreme court, Tashkent State Law University regarding support to the legal clinics.
[Added: 2017/12/02]
Cluster on Good Governance, Policy and Communication 2019/12 Not Initiated
3. Recommendation:

UNDP might now pursue the previously planned establishment of human rights call centers with renewed vigour. Efforts to increase transparency in the courts, is being furthered through the government’s Open Court initiative also provide opportunities. The accepted recommendations for the Universal Periodic Review for Uzbekistan are also a well-spring of new programming ideas in this new era.

Management Response: [Added: 2017/12/02]

Ombudsman has call center to accept human rights violations. Moreover, online portal of the President of Uzbekistan has received more than 1,5 million complaints from citizens. In the next phase, transparency of courts will be supported. UNDP will discuss with Supreme Court on Open Court initiatives. 

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
To organize a meeting with the Supreme Court and include this action in annual work plan of the project’s next phase
[Added: 2017/12/02]
Cluster on Good Governance, Policy and Communication 2019/12 Not Initiated
4. Recommendation:

A new anti-corruption law has been passed, and a comprehensive workplan has been created by the government to address corruption. UNDP rule of law efforts in Uzbekistan could partner with the United Nations Office of Drugs and Crime and work with national partners, to develop new programming initiatives, leveraging the effectiveness and trust earned with the implementation of the Rule of Law Partnership project, among others.

Management Response: [Added: 2017/12/02]

Although anti-corruption is not priority focus area of the UNDP and ROL project, Cluster and project colleagues should meet with UNODC colleagues to discuss collaboration and cooperation in this area. Main goal is to avoid overlapping activities and to successfully use and develop on achievements of our interventions in this area. UNDP Uzbekistan and UNODC Uzbekistan are partners on anti-corruption campaign with General Prosecutor Office since 2015.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
To organize a meeting with the responsible staff of the UNODC to identify cooperation opportunities related to anti-corruption and criminal justice. Prepare list of joint activities between our rule of law programming and UNODC.
[Added: 2017/12/02]
Cluster on Good Governance, Policy and Communication 2019/12 Not Initiated
5. Recommendation:

Given the relatively low donor priority assigned to the Central Asian region at this time, and the new, even lower level of enthusiasm for development aid from some countries, including the United States, diversifying the donor base of the project is crucial going forward. The Uzbekistan government also needs to be pressured to provide ongoing budget support for the project. In particular upkeep of equipment and repair, as well as to ensure new ICT teams are strengthened and expanded is required if the ESUD system is to reach all courts in all regions, and at the 2nd instance level.

Management Response: [Added: 2017/12/02]

Rule of law area is major area of interest of any donor organizations. Many international donor organizations represented in Uzbekistan have their own rule of law portfolios, implemented with various national stakeholders. It should be noted that UNDP and USAID had reached an agreement to extend the project activities for period of 2018-2020 with additional budget over USD 3 mln. However, given the scope of justice sector reforms, fundraising activities should be conducted on a systematic basis within next phase of the project. Regular meetings with donor organizations should be conducted to avoid overlapping of activities.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
To organize a meetings with the donor organizations both on senior and technical level to agree on possible funding opportunities. Underline these areas in talking points for high-level meetings with donor organizations.
[Added: 2017/12/02]
Cluster on Good Governance, Policy and Communication 2020/12 Not Initiated
6. Recommendation:

The project should also use its leverage as a key partner of the government to encourage the release of official statistics that are disaggregated and independently verifiable in regularized reports. These statistics demonstrate progress and capacity to the public in straightforward terms. In turn the publication of statistics, builds confidence and respect for the efforts of government authorities.

Management Response: [Added: 2017/12/02]

Publication of statistics of civil courts should be included in project activities of next phase of the Project. Moreover, project should take necessary actions (conduct negotiations with Supreme court and other national partners) to make Dashboard module of the E-SUD system (the module that automatically generates court reporting) publically available online.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Underline need for publication of court statistics and increasing their availability for wider range of experts in talking points for high-level meetings with Supreme court and other national partners.
[Added: 2017/12/02]
Cluster on Good Governance, Policy and Communication 2019/12 Not Initiated
7. Recommendation:

To seize on the window of opportunity presented by the President’s reform agenda, the widest possible number of partners, within reason, should be engaged. The Supreme Court’s assignment to the project board and as implementing partner might be reconsidered in light of these concerns. Among these new opportunities, the High Judicial Council has requested that UNDP assist the HJC in increasing confidence in the courts through the facilitation of dialogue sessions with citizens. The HJC Research Center aims to work with UNDP on legislative reform, arbitration mechanisms, study tours for improving skills of judges, and a training course on administrative courts. UNDP should ensure that a human rights angle is applied to any partnership or support to these initiatives. UNDP should also work with the Bureau of Enforcement on ways to ensure enforcement of alimony judgements, and the enforcement of judgements in individual cases more broadly. UNDP should also partner with the Enforcement Bureau in its effort to reduce pre-trial detention rates, investigation periods, and temporary detention, especially given the link of this initiative to Goal 16 of the Sustainable Development Agenda.

Management Response: [Added: 2017/12/02]

Project should better engage with all potential stakeholders. This can be achieved by distributing appropriate project funds among national partners and reflected in annual action plans with each national partner. The separation of powers, namely, independence of Supreme Court from Supreme Judicial Council and Enforcement Bureau of General Prosecutor Office should be taken into account while designing any programmatic interventions.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Organize meetings with Supreme Judicial Council, Judicial Research Center and Enforcement Bureau of GPO and agree on mutually acceptable work plans under the next phase of ROL project and/or other joint initiatives.
[Added: 2017/12/02] [Last Updated: 2019/01/08]
Cluster on Good Governance, Policy and Communication 2018/12 Completed UNDP has organized regular meetings with Supreme Judicial Council, Judicial Research Center and Enforcement Bureau of GPO to agree on workplan for Y2018, taking into consideration the independent mandate of these agencies from each other. Joint activities were conducted in close coordination and cooperation with these agencies and other concerned stakeholders. UNDP provided policy advice on arbitration, conducted trainings for judges and organized study tour for Supreme Court representatives and other national partners to France, where they established networking and cooperation arrangements with peer institutions. UNDP has partnered with GPO on moving the agenda of SDG 16 forward and assists in elaboration of indicators on this Goal. UNDP provided policy advice and analytical expertise on criminal justice reforms to Supreme Court. In particular, online video-broadcasting of trials were piloted in selected courts. Under newly launched anti-corruption project, UNDP is supporting Enforcement Bureau of GPO to advance their ICT capacities to reduce red tape in billing system of communal utilities and ensure accurate and efficient enforcement of court decisions. Projects Board meeting minutes, annual work plan with Supreme Court http://online.sud.uz/#!/unauthorized/view History

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