Grievances and Complaints

This page provides guidance on how to make a grievance or complaint to CEI Africa in relation to projects funded by CEI Africa (the “Foundation”) concerning alleged misconduct or malpractice in breach of the principles set out in the CEI Africa E&S Policy by Contractual Partners, grantees, investees, borrowers, or recipients of such funding (the “Foundation Partners”), (“Complaint” or “Complaints” in plural).

External Complaints handling process

Individuals, groups, communities or other stakeholders who believe they have been or have the potential to be adversely affected by the alleged misconduct or malpractice in breach of the principles set out in the CEI Africa Policies (see here) by a Foundation Partner in relation to projects funded by the Foundation (“Third Party Complainant”).

A Complaint can be made by email or phone:

Please ensure that your Complaint includes the following information:

  1. Your name and contact details

  2. Identification of the Foundation Partner and project funded by the Foundation (e.g. name of

    grantee or investee company, Mini-Grid Developer, Crowdlender, or project) to which the

    report or complaint relates

  3. Information regarding the misconduct or malpractice that is alleged to violate the CEI Africa E&S Policy

  4. Information regarding any harm caused by the alleged misconduct or malpractice, provided in as much detail as possible, including an explanation of whether you are directly affected

  5. Any documents that support the allegation of misconduct or malpractice

  6. Information on any steps taken prior to this report or complaint to address the alleged misconduct, malpractice or harm

  7. Whether or not your identity should be kept confidential

  8. Information on what you hope to achieve with your report or complaint: in other words, the redress or resolution sought

CEI Africa will acknowledge receipt of the Complaint and determine the eligibility for investigation. Complaints that do not relate to, or do not allege misconduct or malpractice in breach of the principles set out in the CEI Africa E&S Policy by a Foundation Partner in relation to projects funded by the Foundation, will not be eligible.

If a Complaint is deemed ineligible, the Third Party Complainant will be notified within 10 working days. If the Complaint is deemed eligible, Third Party Complainant will be notified within 10 working days and CEI Africa will reiterate the below process for handling the Complaint.

CEI Africa will initiate an investigation of the misconduct or malpractice alleged in the Complaint, and coordinate with the relevant internal teams to gather facts, determine whether there may have been a breach of the CEI Africa E&S Policy, and consider whether further action is required (“Investigative Process”). The duration of the Investigative Process will be determined on a case-by-case basis. The nature and timeframe of the Investigative Process may depend on a range of factors, including (without limitation): (i) the seriousness of the allegation; (ii) the extent to which CEI Africa has access to relevant information or documents; (iii) the existence of litigation, law enforcement action, or regulatory interventions in relation to the same or related allegations; and (iv) the willingness of other relevant parties (such as Contractual Partners or grantees/investees) to cooperate with CEI Africa’s Investigative Process.

Throughout the Investigative Process, CEI Africa will endeavor to keep the Third Party Complainant informed and updated unless, in its reasonable opinion, this is inappropriate. In some cases, CEI Africa may need to consult an external adviser or investigator to assist with the Investigative Process. In all cases, a formal written response will be provided to the Third Party Complainant on the outcome of the Investigative Process.

In the event that the Third Party Complainant is not satisfied or does not agree with the outcome or solution proposed following the Investigative Process, a second cycle of investigation may be conducted with Foundation involvement as deemed fit by the Foundation and, if required, a final third cycle will be conducted with external mediation, with costs for such mediation to be divided between the Foundation, Third Party Complainant, and if applicable a third party who may also be addressed in such Complaint.

CEI Africa is committed to transparency in the complaint handling process, but external parties should be aware that the ability to provide detailed information on the steps CEI Africa has taken in response to reports or complaints may be limited by: the nature of the investigative work; the Foundation’s legal obligations to the Foundation Partners or other third parties; our legal and regulatory duties under applicable law; and the need for confidentiality over our investigative process.

Relevant details of the Complaint, and the identity of Third Party Complainant, will only be shared with CEI Africa staff directly involved in the review of the Complaint and the relevant Consortium Partners and/or professional advisors. Relevant details of eligible Complaints may also be shared with CEI Africa’s Board and Supervisory Council. It may be the case that details of the Complaint may also need to be shared with the Foundation Partners and/or with other third parties, including law enforcement authorities or regulators, pursuant to applicable law, which may make it difficult to protect the anonymity of the external party making the Complaint. In these circumstances, we will notify this with the Third Party Complainant.