Democratization & Public Accountabillity

Post-War Reconstruction

LTA has been actively involved in activities to promote transparency in post-war reconstruction in the aftermath of the July-August 2006 war.

In February 2007, LTA held along with the Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) the Transparency in Reconstruction conference attended by Lebanese stakeholders, and representatives of International Organizations and Donor countries. As a result a series of recommendations were established. A few months later, in August 2007, based on the recommendations and following a series of testimonies from Lebanese citizens requesting action, the “Transparency in Post-War Reconstruction” campaign was launched by LTA. The campaigned consisted of several phases including a petition, case study reports with discussions and roundtables, and participation and contribution in a conference on Nahr el Bared’s reconstruction. The report developed by Majal assesses the reconstruction of six bridges.

In June 2007, LTA had developed a low-cost strategy to sustain its campaign. Below, is an update of the strategy to be implemented as of March 2008. 

LTA is suggesting the following activities as part of a nation-wide campaign:

1. Second Reconstruction Report: LTA and Majal will be finalizing a report on “Compensations in the Reconstruction of Residential Areas”. The report will detail the process and assessment of the reconstruction process, with a review of the various actors, including the Lebanese government, NGOs, and International and Foreign organizations.
2. Roundtable Discussion: LTA and Majal will be holding a roundtable discussion on May 7, 2008 to discuss the content of their second report and to get the feedback of present stakeholders, before finalizing the report.
3. Post-War Reconstruction Publication: LTA and Majal will be compiling both reports (the one produced in phase 1 and the one finalized in phase 2) into a comprehensive Transparency in post-war reconstruction publication. This publication will also include a recommendations’ and Q&As section, with a mapping of all involved actors.
4. Petition: A petition has been launched at the Press Conference in August 2007. The petition addresses the Lebanese government. Signatories consist of Lebanese citizens among them prominent business and public figures, and victims of misallocation of resources. Until the end of 2007, approx. 5,000 petitions were signed (online and hard copies). Mass SMS will be used to ask citizens to sign the online version of the petition. As of March 2008 LTA will have stands in Universities throughout universities, where students will be suggested to sign the petition.
5. National Conference on Transparency in Post-War Reconstruction: On the eve of the 2nd The results of the petition will be made public. LTA expects to have by then to have 15,000 and 20,000. commemoration of the Lebanese-Israeli war, LTA will be holding a national conference, bringing together representatives of the Lebanese government, the private sector, the public sector, civil society, and the international community to discuss the results of the case studies and the recommendations included in the report.
6. Letters: During the campaign period LTA has been continuously sending letters to the various embassies in Beirut, the governments of whom, have contributed aid to Lebanon. The letters have informed embassies of LTA's campaigns. LTA will continue involving the embassies in its campaign.
7. Website: A special link has been added on LTA's website to back the campaign. By the beginning of March a new version of the website will be launched.
8. Public meetings or presentations: In April and May 2008, LTA will be giving discussion sessions in university and other public gathering venues throughout the country. 
9. Monitor – Good Governance for Sustainable Development: As of August 2008, LTA in coordination with Majal will be publishing a quarterly monitor looking into post-war reconstruction. The monitor will be focusing on the following:
• Reconstruction and construction;
• Public Sector and Administrative Reforms;
• Legislations;
• Public Finance (taxes, procurement, and budget);
• Local Civil Society Organizations (CSOs).

The campaign is being followed-up by the following LTA staff:

Eliana Maakaroun: Coordinating the petitions’ signature, managing volunteers, and organizing the meetings and stands in universities.

Nour Rustom: Coordinating the administration of workshops and follow-up on the reports drafted by Majal.

Lynne Ghossein: Coordinating and follow-up on the publication of the Monitor.

Gaelle Kibranian: Project Manager of the campaign.

Khalil Gebara: Supervising the implementation of the campaign.

LTA has teamed up with Majal at University of ALBA. Majal has been providing LTA with technical assistance. Majal has developed the 2 case study reports, and will be collaborating with LTA on the publication of the final report, and the release of the Good Governance for Sustainable Development Monitor.

Download LTA-Majal Report

Realizing that mismanagement and shortsightedness were omnipresent in the newly formed para-governmental reconstruction organizations, LTA developed in 2003 within its Good Governance program a project to promote transparency in Post War Reconstruction. 

In the context of this project, a number of studies, workshops, and other activities on corruption in the post-war reconstruction process were developed. These studies aim at analyzing the cost of corruption and its nature, role and impact on the Lebanese economy and political system.

Within the framework of this project, a book entitled Corruption in Post War Reconstruction: Confronting the vicious circle, was published by LTA in cooperation with UNDP and Tiri in 2005. The publication, a comparative study on post-war reconstruction in three countries (among them Lebanon) and other case studies, was widely disseminated and received very positive feedback.

Campaign: "Transparency and Integrity in Post-War Reconstruction and Compensations"

At a Press Conference held on August 21, 2007, LTA has launched its "Transparency and Integrity in Post-War Reconstruction and Compensations" campaign.

The activities in the framework of the campaign, among others include: a hotline, evaluation reports on the reconstruction of 6 bridges, and a petition on behalf of the Lebanese citizens requesting transparency in reconstruction and access to information.
Currently, a petition asking for transparency and integrity in post war reconstruction as well as compensations, is being signed throughout Lebanon and on the internet.

SIGN PETITION: click here to view and sign the petition on "Transparency and Integrity in Post War Reconstruction and Compensations".

Integrity in Reconstruction

After the success of the first publication on corruption in post-war reconstruction, LTA has been involved with Tiri and partners from post-wars countries in a project entitled "Integrity in Reconstruction".

In the framework of this project, LTA's Co-executive Director, Khalil Gebara has developed a reconstruction survey on corruption in post-war Lebanon entitled "The Political Economy of Corruption in Post-War Lebanon". The study that was published in June 2007 looks meticulously at corruption in reconstruction, its costs, and consequences. It also highlights the involvement of different stakeholders in the reconstruction process, especially Syrian implications. It finally maps anti-corruption efforts in Lebanon since the end of the civil war.

Currently, Khalil Gebara is co-authoring with LTA's Program Manager, Gaelle Kibranian, a Reconstruction National Integrity System Survey entitled "The Institutionalization of Corruption in Post-War Lebanon". The study focuses on Corruption in Lebanese institutions, including the executive, the legislature, the judiciary, the media, civil society, municipalities, civil services, the security apparatus, and public procurement. For each of the mentioned institutions, the study details the pre-war status, the impacts of the war, the extent and impact of corruption, the numerous relevant legislations, and the current situation.

The study will also present a set of recommendations for each institution, that will be presented to relevant stakeholders including, policy-makers, the government, donors, civil society, and others.

Experts' Meeting: Transparency in Reconstruction

LTA and the MENA-OECD Investment Programme held on February 20, 2007 an Experts' Meeting on "Transparency in Reconstruction" at InterContinental Hotel Phoenicia.
The meeting aimed at identifying measures to improve transparency in post-war reconstruction, reform, economic recovery and aid flow.
The meeting also focused on procurement procedures and the development of a monitoring and evaluation strategy of integrity in reconstruction projects. Four levels of operations were agreed upon: donor institutions, the local government, the private sector, and civil society organizations.