Corruption has been a long-standing problem in DR Congo, especially in the area of public procurement. DRC Governments spend several million annually on contracts, but little information about how this money is spent is publicly available. When contracts are secret, local communities will often have a limited role or will not be able to adequately represent their point of view on development projects. As the result, many public services and projects are not well implemented. Whatever the cause, the real result is that communities do not benefit from the services and infrastructure that were planned for, budgeted and committed to. These are the sign of the absence of Public Contracting Data, which allows the corrupt to flourish.
Disclosure of public contracting data can help fight corruption and improve the delivery of public services and infrastructure projects. Ultimately, honest procurement depends on respecting a few critical principles—fair competition, transparency, and objectivity, with each step governed by well-defined procedures rigorously observed. Where trust is in short supply, the presence of independent observers can put pressure on all participants to respect the procedures and help give the public some confidence in the process. Local civil society organizations can play a key role by providing external oversight, complementing official mechanisms to track and check the performance of the public procurement and tendering agencies.
We empower citizens to become more involved in decisions, processes, and laws that enforce transparency and accountability in public procurement. The citizen-driven approach we employ focuses on cooperative engagement and sustainability. We promote partnerships with policy makers, allowing all key stakeholders to play an integral role in achieving tangible results and shifting the culture of corruption.
By providing citizens with training and enabling them easy access to public contract data, they can be able to monitor the implementation of infrastructure projects and services delivery, thus dramatically reduce corruption and waste in public resources and it would be the equivalent of channeling billions of additional funds into development around the Democratic Republic of the Congo.