Andrew Lavali is the Executive Director of the Institute of Governance Reform (IGR), and one of World Bank’s Global Partnership for Social Accountability (GPSA) partner grantees based in Sierra Leone. On 27th April 2021, the President of Sierra Leone awarded Andrew the Presidential Order of the Rokel in recognition of his contribution to improving the performance of public institutions by providing ‘high quality citizen-driven evidence into national decision making.’ The Order of the Rokel is Sierra Leone's highest and most prestigious decoration and may be awarded to recognize Sierra Leoneans who have distinguished themselves by making valuable contributions to the country in the areas of to the public service, arts and sciences, and philanthropy.
As part of World Bank GPSA’s support to Sierra Leone, Andrew with colleagues in IGR and Oxfam last month launched the Service Delivery Index. The Index sheds light on citizen concerns in the health and education sector and the effects of COVID19 on Human Development and has generated priorities for top government action. On 7th May the GPSA’s Consultant, Rosemary Rop caught up with Andrew to shed light on his views of the significance of the award, and the lessons he has learnt in promoting social accountability.
Below is an excerpt of the citation and a summarized version of the hour-long interview was published here.
Andrew Lavali, Presidential award of the Rokel for 2021:
Andrew Lavali's distinguished track record in bringing high-quality citizen-driven evidence international decision-making has had a tremendous impact on the performance of public institutions in Sierra Leone. Over the last 15 years his innovative and non-combative state citizen engagement model has brought us honor as Sierra Leoneans by making Sierra Leone a reference point on how governments and citizens are better able to co-create solutions. At the conclusion of a divisive election in the USA in 2020 one of Andrew's work the ‘Citizen Manifesto For Sierra Leone’ was discussed by two international news corporations. CNN touted it as a possible model towards facilitating reconciliation among contentious groups in the USA, while the BBC saw it as a way to make elections meaningful in Africa.
As Executive Director of a leading public policy think tank the Institute for Governance Reform IGR Andrew has tirelessly impressed upon institutions the need for accepting an international standard for citizens monitoring of public sector performance which has put Sierra Leone to push democratic accountability beyond the ballot box. Andrew's commitment to making institutions deliver on their mandates and his personal focus on data-driven decisions makes him an excellent choice for this award.
To read the full citation, follow the link here.