By Progress Godfrey, Abuja
The USAID State2State Activity in Nigeria on Friday engaged stakeholders of the Open Government Partnership (OGP) initiative at the sub-national level.
The Conversation which was held on a Twitter space was in commemoration of 2023 OGP Week, themed: Subnational Open Government Partnership in Nigeria: Progress and Prospects.
Giving a background on the subject matter, the CSOs OGP Co-Chair Sokoto state, Dr Auwa Musa, explained that open government partnership is a global initiative that seeks to entrench good governance at the national, state and local government levels.
He stated that since Nigeria signed in for OGP in 2016, 26 states have keyed in at the sub-national level.
USAID State2State activity has assisted Five states in the sub-national level namely: Adamawa, Bauchi, Ebonyi, Gombe and Sokoto.
Musa further highlighted four principles of the open government partnership: Transparency in governance – a situation where government makes transparent information available to the public.
“OGP also seeks to achieve accountability in governance whereby people are held responsible, ” he added.
The OGP, according to Musa, further seeks to ensure citizen engagement in governance as well as the use of technology in governance, whereby budgets and other important documents are made available online.
Speaking further, Public Finance Management, Open Government and Research Specialist, Dr Sa’id Tafida, said what makes the OGP special is that there is a partnership which brings a form of measurement that evaluates where a government is failing or succeeding, in the areas of transparency and others highlighted.
The Commissioner for Budget and Planning Bauchi State, Alhaji Aminu Hammayo, shared the success story of his state throughout the process of joining the OGP initiative, while thanking USAID State2State for their support.
He added that a state action plan had been developed and sent to the governor of Bauchi state, awaiting his endorsement and that of other executives so implementation would begin.
Dr Auwal, speaking on the benefits of States that join the OGP initiative, cited Kaduna state as an example, where despite prevailing security challenges, several organisations indicated interest in funding the different sectors that relate to them.
This, he said, was made possible because the action plan had a clear and transparent roadmap.
He, therefore, urged states to join the initiative to enjoy the deliverables of the partnership.