The third review of the Independent Review Mechanism (IRM) of the African Development Bank Group started in December 2019 and will run until January 2021. An international and independent firm called Savanas E Enseadas LDA was selected to conduct this assignment through a competitive bidding process. This review is in fulfilment of the statutory requirement of the IRM Enabling Resolution to assess the performance of the IRM every four years.
The review will include a thorough assessment of the extent to which the IRM has been an effective recourse mechanism for people affected by projects financed by the African Development Bank. It will also be a useful accountability instrument for the Bank. This analysis will examine the handling of complaints through compliance review by the IRM experts, and the handling of cases through problem-solving exercises by the Board Compliance Review and Mediation Unit (BCRM).
The review will also evaluate the effectiveness of the BCRM in administering the IRM and the effectiveness of its outreach and capacity building initiatives and suggest ways to reach more local communities who, in most cases, are the beneficiaries of African Development Bank-funded projects.
In addition, the review will evaluate the effectiveness of the IRM in enhancing knowledge management/development within the Bank. It will examine the IRM experience with spot-check advisory reviews of project compliance, advisory services by the BCRM and other ways of knowledge enhancement.
Moreover, the review will assess the roles and functions of the BCRM and IRM experts in order to enhance their support to the Boards of Directors of the Bank, and if necessary, revise the present IRM Enabling Resolution and its Operating Rules and Procedures to clarify any ambiguities.
Savanas E Enseadas LDA will interview all relevant stakeholders, former and current BCRM directors, IRM staff, IRM experts, Bank Group executive directors, senior management, general counsel, and professional staff. It will also solicit views from IRM stakeholders, including requestors, CSOs, Bank clients, and governments who have experience with the IRM.
The firm will also consult the heads of other independent accountability mechanisms of international financial institutions, and those that the IRM has collaborated with on compliance reviews, problem-solving exercises, and outreach activities. The views of CSOs will specifically be taken into account through an organized consultative process.
The first review of the IRM started in July 2009 and was completed in June 2010. The second review commenced in December 2013 and was completed in January 2015.