Women remain seriously under-represented in Malawi’s political sphere despite the commitment expressed by a broad spectrum of political and civil society leaders to encourage their greater political participation through the 50-50 campaign. Overall, there is underrepresentation of women in positions of leadership and decision making in many key institutions like political parties, the cabinet, parliament and even local councils. To illustrate this point, in 1999, women representation in the National Assembly was about 9%. In 2004, the representation went up to 15% and in the 2009 election it reached just below 21% out of the 193 seats (Nandin Patel, et al, 2009). In the 2014 elections, a significant drop to 16% in the representation was experienced. For local government councils, in 2000, women constituted only 8% of all the councillors in Malawi. There has been a marginal increase to 13% in 2014. Several factors have contributed to this.
Evidence from the few women who manage to occupy decision-making positions indicates that the enormous challenges they face discourage other women from aspiring to join politics. Further, discrimination against women and female youth at community level has the effect of limiting public confidence in the capabilities of women and female youth in high-level decision making such as Parliament and Councils. According to the most previous Afro-barometer of June 2017, 72% of Malawians believe that women should have the same chance as men to be elected to public office; and yet few actually vote for women. As a result, access and participation of women and female youth in decision making of the political parties is generally low. While data, though limited, show trends in the progression of women and female youth to higher positions in Malawi, the rate of progression is slow and not constant resulting in few women in those political party positions and unable to make constructive change to internal structures and processes of institutions in response to girls and women’s needs. None of the political parties have gender policies in place.
Further, there are gaps in the legal and policy framework for the facilitation of women’s and female youth political participation. International legal obligations on gender equality contained in CEDAW have not been domesticated and there is no comprehensive engendering of electoral laws that have a direct bearing on the political empowerment of women and female youth. The proposition of the 28 positions in the electoral law reform is yet to be understood in practice; including the impact it will have on political party and general public willingness to further support women increase in politics.
The other issue is that there is no comprehensive coordination mechanism set up to handle Political empowerment of women and female youth at national, district and local levels. The existing gender machinery has been hampered by various factors such as limited human resource capacity, high staff turnover, poor funding, and weak coordination mechanisms as well as weak and ineffective CSO coalitions. Although there is some capacity on the ground to implement political empowerment of women programmes in terms of human resources, infrastructure and institutional set up, it is far from adequate for a comprehensive 50:50 campaign programme.
Over the past three electoral cycles, the country implemented three rounds of 50-50 campaigns. Norway has historically been the largest supporter of the 50:50 campaigns during the last three elections (2004, 2009, and 2014) with the aim to facilitate impartiality of interventions through civil society support under the umbrella of NGO/GCN. UNDP has also provided support through political empowerment program that is being implemented by the Ministry of Gender. In addition, there have been efforts by Active Learning Centre working in partnership with Women Legal Resource Centre (WOLREC) through the Trainer of Trainers of councilors program. Taken together, these programmes have made some contribution towards creating an awareness among the Malawian public of gendered representation issues and building the capacity of female political representatives and aspirants. In the 2014 tripartite elections, the 50-50 campaign had two specific objectives, namely, to increase number of female councillors from 9 per cent in 2000 to 50 per cent, and number of female Members of Parliament (MPs) from 22 per cent in 2009 to 50 per cent in 2014 tripartite election. It is acknowledged that although the targeted results were not achieved, the campaign energized the participation of women in electoral politics and also firmly put on the national agenda the need to open up spaces for meaningful women’s participation (Chingaipe and Matita, (2015)).
There are various gains, which the 50:50 Campaign will build on in anticipation for the 2019 tripartite elections. Some of these are: (i) the renewed momentum for women in participation that has been obtained by the 50:50 Campaign over the past electoral cycles resulting into change of attitude towards inclusive electoral processes as an indicator for democratic governance development, (ii) the increased research and documentation forms a solid basis for analysis and therefore improved programming, (iii) the preparedness of Malawi Electoral Commission to include gender as part of their core business. These factors, amongst many others, provide a more favourable context for more promising results.
In view of the above, the Government of Malawi and its partners (the Royal Norwegian Embassy, the United Nations and non-State Actors) will implement a 50:50 campaign programme aimed at increasing women and female youth participation in 2019 tri-partite elections and beyond using a robust sustained strategy and innovative professional approach. The Royal Norwegian Embassy, on behalf of Government of Malawi, is therefore seeking the services of a Firm to manage the process of formulating and implementing the 50:50 Program; and the 50:50 Campaign Fund.
The Management Agent will have general functions that will apply to 50:50 Campaign Program in the run up to 2019 elections and beyond. Specific functions will include the following:
- In consultation with the Ministry of Gender, Children, Disability and Social Welfare (MoGCDSW) and the Technical Committee formulate a five year 50:50 Campaign Program with a theory of change towards promoting female representation in politics and related advocacy, innovation, and best practice learnt from elsewhere.
- In collaboration with the Malawi Electoral Cycle Program, map and identify female aspirants and candidates, and anchor the interests of female aspirants across the electoral cycle and even delve into the non-traditional interventions, to the interest of female candidates including undertaking gender advocacy with political parties.
- Identify CSO implementers of 50:50 Campaign and support the MoGCDSW to coordinate their interventions.
- Establish media engagement forum.
- Partner with downstream implementing institutions using specific selection criteria and reporting requirements.
Management System and Process
- Maintain a 50:50 physical Campaign management office, ensuring that all stakeholders are afforded fair opportunity to interact with 50:50 Campaign Management team. Ideally, the office will be in Lilongwe.
- Prepare and submit work plans, budgets and reports on progress against agreed performance indicators for each round to MoGCDSW and RNE as required.
- Ensure effective communication networks (phone, email and website) to facilitate linkages between the 50:50 team and stakeholders, political-empowerment related projects, Program Steering Committee members and all other members of the 50:50 Campaign management team.
- Work closely with the other partners implementing women political empowerment initiatives for the identification of areas of synergy and ensuring cohesion and interactive approaches on coordinating the RNE funded component of the Campaign.
- Provide and manage grants, monitor and provide technical assistance to the 50:50 Campaign portfolio of grantees from the 50:50 campaign basket fund in the run up to 2019 Elections.
- Collaborate, lobby and work with political parties, MEC and other relevant Government institutions on electoral law reform and the electoral processes in general.
- In collaboration with the Sector Working Group on PEW, revise the training Manual for Female Political Aspirants and Candidates considering lessons learnt from previous 50:50 Campaign activities in Malawi, the Africa Region and beyond.
- In Collaboration with Sector Working Group on PEW, undertake capacity building (mostly mentoring approaches), for female political aspirants and candidates in the run up to 2019 elections.
- Prepare and submit bi-annual reports to the Royal Norwegian Embassy; the Ministry of Gender, Children, Disability and Social Welfare; the Sector Working Group on Women in Decision Making; and CSO Forum on Political Empowerment of Women.
- Conduct post-mortem analysis of the 2019 elections.
Advocacy and Visibility/Communication/Knowledge Management
- Develop and maintain a 50:50 Campaign website that promotes and enhances the work of CSOs on 50:50 Campaign and provides important information on the Campaign and its outcomes.
- Ensure effective communication of success stories of 50:50 Campaign projects to a wider audience ensuring that there is sufficient knowledge amongst the CSOs to trigger behavioral change and embrace innovative political empowerment of women strategies.
- Facilitate real time research, mapping, monitoring and organise lesson-learning events through which dissemination of analysis shall be done. The data will be used to continuously influence the strategy redesign.
- Document lessons learnt and share innovative political empowerment strategies at CSO Political Empowerment of Women Forum, including regional/international fora – to enhance cross fertilisation of innovative ideas, and establish networks on PEW.
- Track and facilitate advocacy for gender and law reform, including the matter of the execution of the 28 Women’s Parliamentary seats, and related electoral reforms to ensure continuity and future synergies.
- Develop messages and design a communication strategy that includes Media houses to ensure visibility of 50:50 Campaign program achievements/successes.
The Management Agency will have a Fund Manager who will be responsible for monitoring progress of projects in portfolio and will manage milestones on behalf of the 50:50 Campaign team. The Fund Manager will be accountable to Technical Working Group and RNE for such actions. The services provided will include:
- The program will be managed using relevant grant management rules – even for downstream partners.
- The Fund Manager will manage a portfolio of the relevant number of implementing agents as will be required upon consultation with the other programs contributing towards the 50:50 Campaign.
- The Fund Manager will need to ensure that payments are linked to progress milestones that are contractually binding, ensuring that the project is on course to deliver its planned objectives as set out in the 50:50 Campaign detailed project proposal.
- The Fund Manager will disburse funds to grantees and maintain detailed records on financial management.
- The Fund Manager will undertake financial spot checks.
- The Fund Manager will prepare requests for disbursement and will ensure adequate cash flow management for the grant-making activities of the Fund.
Monitoring and Evaluation
- Implement a Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) system that measures the results and impacts of funded projects in each round, and work with Grantees and other relevant partners to ensure implementation of the M&E system.
- Monitor the portfolio against related risks.
- Monitor the progress of projects against the original application and the implementation agreement or any agreed revisions thereof, and in the event that the project departs from the original plan or other difficulties arise, work with the Grantee to resolve the shortcomings, seeking the advice and guidance of the relevant technical teams as necessary.
- Inform Technical Working Group of unsatisfactory Grantee performance and on action taken, at the earliest possible opportunity.
- Advise Technical Working Group of the policy and institutional changes suggested by grantees that are needed to increase impacts and bring about systemic change in the portfolio for each intervention.
On a quarterly basis, the Management Agency will report to the Norwegian Embassy and MoGCDSW/Technical Working Group, and will make presentations on progress.
The Coordinating Agent will need to deliver against the following reporting calendar:
- Quarterly technical and financial progress reports to RNE/MoGCDSW detailing:
- Projects in the pipeline and stage reached.
- Budget and expenditure (actual and forecast).
- Any deviations and issues for MoGCDSW and RNE consideration.
- Annual reports of progress against the Project Results and Resource Framework.
- An evaluation of the impact of projects funded by the 50:50 Campaign Program at the completion of each project.
The 50:50 Campaign Program and the Coordinating Agent will be subject to review after 12 months of operation.
The 50:50 Campaign Management Agent is required for two years (November 2017 - December 2019).
- 50:50 Program Document with a clear Theory of Change.
- A Monitoring and Evaluation Plan for 50:50 Campaign.
- Data base/GMIS of female political aspirants and candidates for the 2019 tri-partite elections.
- Up-dated data base of Accredited CSO implementers of 50-50 Campaign program, including a geographic map.
- A Grant making scheme to Accredited CSO implementing partners.
- Revised Training Manual for Women in Politics.
- 50:50 Campaign/Communication Strategy which includes involvement of media houses.
- Resource Mobilization Strategy for political empowerment of women.
- Progress, Financial and Evaluation Reports.
The Management Agent will be required to demonstrate the following characteristics and record of accomplishment:
- Sufficient experience with elections management bodies and CSOs working on political empowerment of women for at least five years.
- In the case of non-local institutions, they should collaborate with local NGOs.
- Transparent and robust institutional financial management system.
- A reputable record of accomplishment on promoting gender equality and women political participation.
- Experience with sub granting and development of grant management schemes, and programme management with an inclusion of capacity assessments, able to provide technical assistance to grantees.
- Sufficient experience in implementing large scale projects and working and engaging with Sector Departments, CSOs and different political actors at all levels.
- Sufficient capacity to deal with female candidates from various parties as well as independent candidates.
- A deep understanding of dynamics surrounding elections.
- Experience of working in Africa with the CSO sector, in elections management.
- Ability to field a team of dedicated full time staff and selected advisers able to demonstrate the needed expertise and skill sets, including:
5.1 TEAM LEADER/CHIEF OF PARTY
- At least a Master’s Degree in Political Science, Elections related matters, Gender and Governance, Law, Financial management, Public Administration and Sociology.
- Demonstrated experience in management of elections, Governance and Gender programs.
- Demonstrated experience in research and results-based management of gender and elections-related activities.
- Strong leadership, program management, monitoring, evaluation and communication skills.
- Experience in provision of policy-level technical and advisory support in the development and implementation of strategies and plans focusing on achievement of results.
- Demonstrated experience in institutional analysis and capacity development, and the provision of technical assistance to electoral bodies.
- Demonstrated experience in providing technical advice to 50:50 campaign stakeholders, and the development and implementation of strategic plans.
- Demonstrated experience in networking, partnership building, and successfully managing multicultural Project teams to achieve demanding operational goals.
- First-hand managerial experience and knowledge of electoral cycle support.
- Demonstrated experience in resource mobilization, working with donors and managing national and international stakeholder relationships. Prior experience in overseeing a Basket Fund is highly desirable.
5.2 PROGRAM MANAGER (SENIOR GENDER AND GOVERNACE EXPERT)
- At least a Master’s Degree in Gender and Development, Political Science, Law, Public Administration, Management, and Sociology, or any other relevant Master’s degree.
- Proven experience in Gender and Governance programming.
- Expertise in Elections related matters; will have had experience working on the 50:50 Campaign before and therefore, has a deep understanding of dynamics surrounding elections, and particularly factors that impede women’s participation in elections and therefore political decision-making.
- Expertise in developing material and administering TOT.
- Capacity to develop advance advocacy causes for women in politics, including promoting public relations for female politicians and candidates.
- Excellent project management skills; development of the projects, plans and strategies, and administering them.
5.3 MONITORING AND EVALUATION OFFICER (RESERCH EXPERT)
- Master`s degree (or equivalent) in Political or Social Science, Economics, International Development Studies is required.
- Experience in research, data analysis, management and interpretation of results.
- Demonstrated experience in the design of program M&E Plans and Strategies.
- Experience in monitoring implementation of the M&E Policies, Strategies and Procedures.
- Experience in facilitation of knowledge building and knowledge sharing on monitoring and evaluation.
5.4 FUND MANAGER
- Master’s Degree in Audit and Management Accounting, Accountancy, Financial Management or Business Administration is required from a recognized tertiary institution.
- At least 5 years of experience working in financial management or administration roles.
- Demonstrated experience in providing financial administrative and execution support for complex Projects, involving the administration of multiple contribution agreements with donors is essential.
- Demonstrated experience and working knowledge applying institutional Financial Rules and Regulations, as well as Results Based Management tools and financial analysis skills.
- An excellent understanding and firsthand experience in supervising administrative staff.
- Experience in supporting resource mobilization, managing Basket Funds and donors reporting obligations.
- Experience in development of the projects, plans and strategies.
The Coordinating Agent will be expected to provide the services described above from November 2017 to December 2019.
The full TORs will be available on this website: https://www.norway.no/en/malawi/norway-malawi/news-events/news2/5050-campaign-tor, or may collect hard copies from the reception of the Royal Norwegian Embassy, or Ministry of Gender Registry (Floor 4 of Gemini House, City Centre, Lilongwe).
Closure for the application will be on the 29th of September, 2017 at 1:00pm. For all communication, please use the following postal or email addresses. Hard copies should be hand delivered:
Application should be entitled: Proposal for 50:50 Campaign – Management Agency
The Royal Norwegian Embassy
P/Bag 323, Arwa House, City Centre, Lilongwe
Tel: 01 774 211