A non-governmental organisation, the African Centre for Leadership, Strategy and Development (LSD), has urged the newly-elected governors in the country to be accountable and responsive to the citizens’ wellbeing by adopting the Open Government Partnership (OGP) initiative.
At a press conference convened by the centre with support from Macarthur Foundation to mark the global celebration of the OGP Week in Abuja, LSD’s programme coordinator, Mr. Uchenna Arisukwu, urged governments to demonstrate the political will to the process, ensure access to information, and use technology to minimise discretion and deepen the citizens’ engagement in the anti-graft war in order to achieve set targets.
Arisukwu said that the call became imperative because since Nigeria joined the OGP process as its 70th member globally, and 12th in Africa, not much had been done to ensure effective implementation.
He said that the OGP initiative was launched in 2011 to provide a platform for governments to be accountable and responsive to citizens and assist in achieving the desired governance goals.
The coordinator, however, said that so far only 10 states: Kaduna, Kano, Anambra, Ebonyi, Abia, Enugu, Niger, Edo, Adamawa, and Jigawa, out of the 36 states in the federation, had signed up and domesticated OGP.
Fielding questions from journalists, the acting executive director of the centre, Mr. Monday Osasah, urged governments and stakeholders of the OGP to exercise the political will to fast-track project implementation in the second phase, adding it was imperative for the government to make policy to include OGP in its Federal Executive Council (FEC) discussion to encourage MDAs to implement the policy objectives.
Osasah also appealed to states yet to sign the OGP to do so in order to bring about a holistic fight against corruption in Nigeria.
The national coordinator, Open Alliance, Ms Ayomide Faleye, called on stakeholders of OGP to ensure that the second phase of the plan reflected issues that affected the citizens.
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