Article from ROAPE Volume 26 Number 81
Clean-ups, Conditionality & Adjustment
This article critically evaluates the nature of administrative reform in the context of conditionality and structural adjustment. Structural adjustment programmes constitute the broader environment and prioritisations within which donors and creditors support institutional reform. This raises the questions concerning the ownership and purpose of reform, especially if one bears in mind the substantial inequality of power between individual severely-indebted states and multilateral creditors which enjoy the alignment of many bilateral donors behind their prognoses. One can identify some of the contradictions that this relationship produces through an examination of Mozambique's experience with donors in respect to corruption and anti-corruption strategies. Here, corruption constitutes part of the politics of adjustment, and the reforms which are to tackle it have to work on an institutional terrain which has already been subjected to the disintegrative effects of a decade of adjustment and minimally-controlled donor influence. All of this renders the idea - often at the base of much donor thinking concerning reform - of a stable and enlightened leadership motivated to implement rational/technical reform throughout government at best a simplification and at worst a misrepresentation.