Panama City, 20 January 2015 – Since the start of the EUROsociAL programme in Panama, the Panamanian government has expressed the need to improve coordination among all the stakeholders involved in prevention of violence given the number of local initiatives that fall short of expectations for lack of a coordination system.
The European Forum, which has been working in Panama as part of the “citizen security” axis of the EUROsociaAL programme (for cooperation between Europe and Latin America), is working with the Panamanian Ministry of Public Security (Ministerio de Seguridad Pública de Panamá, MINSEG) on its “National Strategy for Citizen Security”. This policy is based on five pillars including strengthening the institutions, prevention, and social inclusion.
On 20 January, Efus held a series of work meetings in Panama during which it presented its proposed scheme for improving coordination between the central and local levels of governance with regard to prevention. The proposal is based, among other, on practices developed in Europe (France, United Kingdom, Italy and Belgium) and on the work carried out in Panama in 2013 (meetings, interviews and workshops) with local and national stakeholders in prevention of violence.
The meetings were attended by the Deputy Minister of Public Security of Panama, Rogelio Donadío, the Director of the Bureau of Integral Security (Oficina de Seguridad Integral, OSEGI), Hernán Morales, and representatives of the local governments of the province of Panama and of San Miguelito and Yavitza. They welcomed the proposal and agreed to implement it.
Efus was represented by Gian Guido Nobili, head of the department of security policy at the regional government of Emilia Romagna, in Italy. He explained that the scheme consists in signing cooperation agreements between the central and local governments regarding the creation of a contribution fund that would finance urban security programmes and projects set forth by the Ministry of Public Security (MINSEG).
In doing so, local governments would contribute to the efforts led by the government to manage the prevention of violence and take part in the implementation of the national strategy for citizen security. Furthermore, this system would ensure better use of public resources and strengthen the capacities of local governments in the areas of citizen security and prevention.
The next objective, for 2015, is to design a methodological tool for the practical implementation of this scheme throughout Panama, in line with the commitment and willingness of the Ministry of Public Security.