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This special issue of eVALUation Matters brings highlights from the 2012 Evaluation Week. It presents a snapshot of each day’s activities, starting with the warm welcome message delivered by the Director of OPEV, Rakesh Nangia, who praised President Kaberuka for his 'incredible drive to improve everything'.
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An effective and efficient evaluation function is crucial for the African Development Bank’s efforts to continuously strengthen the effectiveness of its development initiatives. This evaluation provides an independent and external assessment, a fresh perspective, but one that is evidence-based.
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The Gabon Country Assistance Evaluation (CAE) reviews assistance by the African Development Bank to Gabon over the 1996-2008 period, which covers 3 programming cycles, namely 1996-1998, 2003-2005 and 2006-2010, with each based on a Country Strategy Paper (CSP).
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Since 2008 the government of Sierra Leone appears to have a stronger strategic focus and direction. However there remain major concerns about corruption and fiscally unfavourable agreements with private companies, highlighted by high profile cases in relation to mining agreements.
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The report found that there has been a positive trend in AfDB participation in policy dialogue, but its capacity and added value in policy dialogue remains limited.
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The report shows that decentralisation has increased the efficiency of the policy-based operations implementation, but decision-making authority is still limited at country level.
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The overall assessment by the report was highly positive. Bank support was judged to have played an important role in supporting policy reform and institutional strengthening.
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The report found that the degree of harmonisation and alignment of policy-based operations has improved significantly over the evaluation period. Policy dialogue and strategic engagement by the Rwanda field office also improved.
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The Bank has participated within an increasingly better functioning framework of budget support in Ethiopia reflected in the lesser problems with disbursement that have been encountered.
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The long delays in fulfilling loan conditions, inadequate quality at entry, problems of implementation capacity caused many delays in achieving results. A slow but gradual improvement can be seen though.