Implementation of the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control in most sub-Saharan Africa countries has been slow, largely due to tobacco industry interference. That was the finding of a survey of FCTC Parties included in the 2012 WHO progress report on FCTC implementation.
Now the Tobacco Control Research Group based at the University of Bath (UK), has launched a monitoring and accountability project that aims to change that trend.
FCA’s Regional Coordinator, Tih Ntiabang, will be devoting a large portion of his time to the initiative.
My name is Nonguebzanga Maxime Compaoré. I’m a citizen of Norway with roots in Burkina Faso, West Africa. I am privileged to be an FCA Board member representing the EURO Region. For the last four years, I have worked as a Special Advisor for International Affairs at the Norwegian Cancer Society (NCS). I am tasked with liaising with NCS’s partners, and coordinating the organisation’s international partnership projects and activities.
Below is the text (in French) of a cyber-interview with Thanguy NZUE OBAME, about the adoption of a Tobacco Control law in Gabon. It provides additional details to our previous post (in English only). Very interestingly article 48 of this law proposes to award 2% of the tobacco taxes to fund tobacco control activities. If adequately implemented such a budget would be extremely valuable and effective (see question 8) as most of the time no regular funding is provided. The choice of 2% is an improvement upon the goal mentioned (never implemented) in the article 6 of the 1988 European Charter Against Tobacco, "impose a levy of at least 1% of of tobacco cotx revenue to fund specific tobacco control and health promotion activities".
Reading an updated version (9/23/2013) of an interview with the Executive Director of the Alliance Nationale des Consommateurs et de l'Environnement (ANCE), Mr Ebeh Kodjo, who is also Secretary of ATCA, and an FCA board member (until december 31, 2013) the main problem seems to be funding. Nothing new? Except that ANCE has been one of the groups that received significant funding (the last CTFK grant awarded in Dec 2012 was for $152K+ while 54K had been awarded in January 2012) so how much is now needed, what happened to the previous grants, is any detailed budget explaining where the money went-goes available? Those questions are especially important when the Gates Foundation is looking for the next organization to coordinate their tobacco control efforts in Africa and ATCA could be a candidate.
Following up on the need for more transparency (and accountability) that has been at the core of this blog, I have listed 10 indicators that I believe would be helpful to assess how organizations are performing. Here they are:
1. Names, bios of the staff and contact email (program, project managers, all staff involved) 2. Detailed annual report explaining the activities 3. Detailed annual operational budget (easy to find and providing key info, see below) 4. Budget for staff and consultants (staff administrative costs) 5. Budget for travel and hospitality (including monthly update and yearly detailed list) 6. Transparency blog providing regular detailed information about the progress of each program/project/grant 7. Open selection process for grant applications (all applications available) 8. Transparency requirement for grantees and sub-grantees (including the 7 first items of this scorecard) 9. Establishment of a benchmark scorecard (baseline) for the project, updated yearly to allow evaluation 10. Willingness to answer questions and provide information (for big institutions, Access to Information person and procedure)
What do you think the score is for each organization involved in promoting tobacco control in Africa?
Each campaign needs to have a focus in four areas throughout the campaign. The campaign needs effective management, it needs the right policy, it needs an effective communication strategy and it needs the right network. These elements interplay with each other.
According to FCA, the proposed regulation of flavours for tobacco products does not represent a risk for burley: cigarettes containing burley continue to be sold in countries with strong regulation on flavourings.
Le programme de la conférence et le formulaire de demande de subvention pour y assister sont maintenant disponibles via le site ATCA et les copies postées par nos soins sur google docs. Le formulaire de demande de subvention indique que le nombre de personnes subventionnées via une bourse de participation est limité. Il précise également que les personnes ainsi invitées devront s'engager à assister à toutes les sessions, prendre des notes et partager leur expérience: un blog pour la conférence (voir quelques autres précédents sur la colonne de gauche en bas) semble un outil parfaitement adapté pour atteindre ces objectifs.
We have completed the list of the grants awarded by FCA in 2009 (with funding from the Norwegian Cancer Society). The total is $80.500 for 10 groups and 9 countries. There are 5 grants of $5000, 3 of $10000, 1 of $7500 and 1 of 8000. As you can see the amounts awarded are much smaller, 10 to 20 times smaller. The amount of one grant awarded by IDRC or Bloomberg is bigger than the whole annual budget for those "small" grants. Two organizations also received funding from Bloomberg and/or IDRC: ATCA (Togo) and VAT (Ghana).
L'appel à projets annoncé par le Consortium composé de l'American Cancer Society (ACS), Framework Convention Alliance (FCA), Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids (CTFK), Union contre la tuberculose (Union), et les coalitions Africaines ATCA et ATCRI a pour date limite le 3 août . Le document diffusé ne précise pas où il convient d'adresser les projets. Une lacune qui sera sans doute rapidement comblée.
In the first description of this grant (initiated in September 2009 for a 12 months duration), only ATCA appeared and Ebeh Kodjo told us they had been awarded CAD 122.200. In this description, FCA appears. FCA informed us they received CAD 97.000. Since the stated total of the grant is CAD 302.200 where did the rest (83.000) go? to IDRC?
This grant of CAD 291.100 is listed as starting August 1st 2009 (duration 12 months) but we only found about it now. The recipients appear to be the Global Smokefree Partnership, FCA and Healthbridge. FCA told us they received CAD 145.000 managed via GSP. Path Canada (HealthBridge since 2006) is also mentioned as a recipient. HealthBridge had partnered with IDRC to apply for the phase 2 of the Gates Foundation in July 2009 (ACS was selected).
The grant is to allow the partnership to help 6 country teams (Cameroon, Eritrea, Ghana, Malawi, Sénégal and Zambia).