KATHMANDU, Feb 22: The National Reconstruction Authority (NRA) has launched an online monitoring information system to keep track of activities of international non-governmental organizations and non-governmental organizations (I/NGOs) involved in the reconstruction and rehabilitation in all districts affected by the 2015 earthquakes.
The data system, which was developed with the assistance of the Asian Development Bank, officially came into operation from Wednesday amid allegations of irregularities by I/NGOs involved in reconstruction in the affected districts.
Chief Executive Officer of NRA Yubaraj Bhusal said that the system will be instrumental in ensuring transparency in the activities of the non-governmental organizations as the system allows the NRA to monitor if the organizations are working in line with the agreements reached with the NRA and to make them accountable.
The NRA officials said that the system will keep up-to-date record of activities of I/NGOs as well as the funds channeled by them for the reconstruction activities and routinely make it public through NRA's website.
Over 150 I/NGOs are currently involved in shelter and livelihood activities, school building reconstruction and educational activities, health institutions reconstruction and other health-related activities, and heritage reconstruction and masons training related activities, according to the NRA.
But lately, some I/NGOs had courted controversy after they were found involved in misusing funds meant for the earthquake victims. Last year, Nepal Red Cross Society (NRCS) was found splurging millions meant for earthquake victims on administrative activities and the purchase of various luxury items instead of channelizing the hefty amounts into the real tasks of earthquake reconstruction and rehabilitation.
NRA officials said that the system is likely to address such problems as the system makes the monitoring fast and effective. The system requires the I/NGOs to submit their progress reports regularly along with expenditure details among other things.
The engineers deployed by NRA in the districts will monitor reconstruction activities of I/NGOs and upload the information to the system, according to NRA.
“So, we can tally if the information supplied by organizations is genuine or not. The system is going to make the reconstruction activities effective and more than that, transparent,” Deputy Spokesperson of NRA Bhishma Kumar Bhusal.
Similarly, the general public can also have detailed information about the money provided or to be provided by various donor agencies for the reconstruction efforts as well from the NRA website.
The NRA has already uploaded on its website the information about budget and projects of ADB and Japan International Cooperation Agency.