UNDP is implementing a project titled “Strengthening Public Grievance Redress Mechanisms” in collaboration with the Wafaqi Mohtasib’s Secretariat. The following are main objectives of this project.
1. To improve redress and response systems and procedures on accountability, transparency and integrity (ATI) to enable closer alignment with the needs and expectations of citizens;
2. To increase public demand for ATI in service delivery; and
3. To facilitate availability of and access to information regarding grievance redress and service delivery mechanisms and standards.
Under one of the outputs, the project has initiated some activities aiming at capacity building of Wafaqi Mohtasib’s Secretariat and partner federal agencies. The main focus of these activities is to enhance capacities of the staff dealing with public grievance redress mechanisms. As a first step, the project commissioned a study on systemic issues of five federal agencies; National Database and Registration Authority (NADRA), Sui Northern Gas Pipelines Limited (SNGPL), State Life Insurance Corporation (SLIC), Pakistan Post and Pakistan Telecommunications Limited (PTCL), which contribute towards higher volume of complaints against these agencies. The study looked at grievance redress systems and causes of mal-administration and complaints made against each agency, and identified measures of improvement.
Most complaints against SNGPL relate to over billing, delays in obtaining gas connection, faulty meters, gas leakages, and disconnection of gas supply. Complaints against NADRA relate to delays in processing and issuance of CNIC, rejection of CNIC and other applications on the grounds that documentation is incomplete, and mis-behavior of staff. Complaints against SLIC relate to rejection of claims and delays in processing of claims. Similarly, most complaints against Pakistan Post relate to loss of mail or delay in receiving the mail and loss of money orders.
The study also looked at current public grievance redress mechanisms of the agencies and highlighted salient features of the systems. It is important to mention here that all these agencies have their internal grievance redress systems following the defined policies and procedures. The basic objective of the assignment is to examine and analyze the existing SOPs and suggest proposals for refinement keeping in view the citizens’ needs. The project, therefore, wants to engage well two experienced development consultants to develop SOPs on complaint handling mechanisms for these agencies, one for SNGPL and NADRA and the other for SLIC and Pakistan Post. The consultants should clearly specify their preference for the agencies for which they want to be considered.
Terms of References
The consultants will:-
• Hold focused meetings with the Honourable Wafaqi Mohtasib and project management unit to understand scope and importance of assignment
• Review capacity assessment and mapping report prepared in consultation with the partner federal agencies (NADRA, SLIC, Pakistan Post, SNGPL and PTCL) and develop understanding about systemic issues behind the generation of complaints against these agencies
• Coordinate with the focal persons of federal agencies and collect existing SOPs for review and analysis
• In consultation with the federal agencies, examine and analyze existing SOPs on public grievance redress systems being practiced within the agencies keeping in mind the following factors;
i. Is the procedure for making complaints well-publicized?
ii. Are the complaint mechanisms simple and accessible to all citizens, especially the poor and illiterate?
iii. Is there standardization of complaint mechanisms across different departments to facilitate citizens?
iv. Is there any coordination mechanism amongst different departments to ensure efficient handling of complaints?
v. Does the investigation process of complaints take all points of view into account?
vi. Does any system exist to inform the citizens about the progress of investigations?
vii. Is there any time limit fixed on handling the complaints and reaching decisions?
viii. The agency is conveying the decisions on complaints and the reasons for conveying to all parties, especially citizens making the complaints or not?
• Formulate proposals based on the above analysis to refine old SOPs with clear defined roles and responsibilities of staff responsible for grievance redress within the agencies
• Hold meetings with the senior management of agencies to finalize SOPs and ensure that these are incorporated in their capacity development modules and training modules for the training of their officers and staff..