We have realized that all that is good to be drawn as best practice experience regarding the implementation of the participatory budgeting program, can be drawn from the famous and successful "participatory budgeting program" that took place in Porto-Alegre, Brazil a city of 1.3 million inhabitants located at the far south in the state of Rio. It all started in 1989. The aim is essentially to ensure that the population is actively involved in the development and monitoring of Municipal Council development projects specifying their needs and setting priorities (housing, education, health ...) during public meetings within the scope of this initiative. There was also participation built around thematic issues for the consideration of a more comprehensive view of the city’s problems: this includes various social sectors (trade unions, entrepreneurs, farmers, students, community movements, etc.), and this gave rise to several thematic committees (transportation, education, economic development, etc.).
Participatory budgeting is an instrument of democratization within the framework of public management that seeks to promote the decentralization of political and economic decisions, and transfer of resources based on two fundamental principles thus:
• First, is the principle of universal participation and direct involvement. Every citizen has the right to debate and discuss the directions of the state. Thus, the smallest inhabitant of such state or municipality has the right to manifest his opinion, regardless of membership in an institution, without having to ask permission .Popular participation is exercised directly, without intermediaries.
• Second, the principle of transparency regarding the management of public investment budget meant for Local Councils. The citizen will now have fair and equal access to information in order to have the opportunity to deliberate on the various components of public spending in his community (interviews costs, operating, investment, finance charges and other ...) and to raise additional revenue.
In this sense, the participatory budget is exactly the opposite of any movement of partisan division where the ruler identifies company and party on partisan lines. In addition to this social control, participatory budgeting encourages the exercise of active citizenship, the true driving force of democracy. Thus, the process of participatory budgeting is about capacity building and development of a civic education, a collective space where individuals take ownership of knowledge hitherto reserved, they are waiting passively for their rulers decide to satisfy their various demands, whereby they refuse to submit to pressure from their officials or their intermediaries. This is a practice that breaks with policies based on favoritism and partisan lines and based on “give and take” politics of the South.
With this new instrument of direct democracy through participatory budgeting, citizens get to fully exercise their citizenship, not just their duty to vote once every five years as it requires the right to exercise citizenship throughout the term of office, by monitoring and intervening in the actions of their Local Municipal Councils. Strengthening democracy, fostered by popular participation, direct and universal through the participatory budget, disturbs those who are committed to the institutionalization of power against all forms of popular democracy.