OUR FOCUS

Democratic governance

Elderly women taking part in the voter education campaign organized by the Election Commission Nepal with the support of UNDP’s Electoral Support Project and funding from EU and Norway in 29 districts across the country. Photo: UNDP Nepal

In depth

Nepal is at a critical juncture of its political transition process. With the constitution promulgated in September 2015 making federalism a key feature of the new Nepal, the country is looking at a unique opportunity for ushering in a new era of governance—transforming the existing institutions while overcoming their deficits in democratic governance and service-oriented public administration.

The Constitution is an outcome of the 10-years long Maoist insurgency (1996-2006), People’s Movement II, the Comprehensive Peace Agreement signed in 2006 and the Madhes Movement 2007. The Constitution has envisaged the federal form of governance with three levels of government: federal, provincial and local, and defines their powers and authorities.

UNDP approaches to governance programmes is working at three levels: process, mechanism and outcome. Process refers to the quality of participation necessary “to ensure that political, social and economic priorities are based on a broad consensus in society and that the voices of the excluded, poorest and most vulnerable are heard in decision-making.”  Mechanisms of governance include transparent, democratic institutions. The outcomes of good governance include ‘peaceful, stable and resilient societies, where services are delivered and reflect the needs of communities, including the voices of the most vulnerable and marginalized’.

UNDP ensures inclusive and effective democratic governance by advocating, advising, fostering impartial spaces for dialogue, achieving consensus and building institutions with the ultimate goal of bringing effective and equitable delivery of service to citizens and reinforcing the rule of law and citizen security.  To this end, UNDP helps create an enabling environment for all social partners, including civil societies, to grow in strength and contribute towards national development. 

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