MRA Hosts Access to Information Session at IMF-World Bank CSO Forum


Media Rights Agenda (MRA) will host a session on the “Role of Access to Information in Promoting Development and Citizen Participation in Governance” at the Civil Society Policy Forum (CSPF) taking place within the 2017 Spring Meeting of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank Group (WBG) from Monday, April 17 to Friday, April 21 in Washington D.C. in the United States.
The session is being convened by MRA in partnership with the Africa Freedom of Information Centre (AFIC) and the African Platform on Access to Information (APAI)
The Access to Information session will take place on Friday, April 21, within the framework of the Spring Meetings of institutional shareholders of the WBG/IMF from their 189 member countries.
Based on the understanding that the right to information is a basic right that underpins good governance, democracy and the enjoyment of other rights, the session will share experiences of how citizens in Africa and around the world have used access to information to promote service delivery and good governance.
The session will be moderated by Mr. Toby Mendel, the Executive Director of the Center for Law Democracy (CLD), a Canadian-based international human rights NGO. The speakers at the session will be Mr. Edetaen Ojo, Executive Director of Media Rights Agenda; Mr. Gilbert Sendugwa, Executive Director of the Africa Freedom of Information Centre based in Kampala, Uganda; and Ms Carole Excell, Acting Director of Environmental Democracy Practice at the World Resources Institute (WRI) in Washington DC.
The Civil Society Policy Forum will be open to all those registered for the 2017 Spring Meetings. Applications for registration closed on Monday, April 3.
The CSPF is an integral part of the IMF and World Bank Group and Annual Meetings, which provides an open space for Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) to dialogue and exchange views with the World Bank and IMF staff, government delegations, and other stakeholders on a wide range of topics.
The 2017 CSPF programme will include an orientation session on the World Bank; a roundtable discussion with the World Bank Group Executive Directors; and about 40, mainly CSO-organized, policy dialogue sessions that reflect the diversity of the policy issues that CSOs around the world are concerned.
The sessions were selected from submissions made by CSOs during a call for proposals, which ended on February 24, 2017.
CSOs include non-governmental organizations, community groups, labour unions, indigenous peoples movements, faith-based organizations, professional associations, foundations, think tanks, charitable organizations, and other not-for-profit organizations.
An AMWeb IMF/WBG Spring Meetings App is available for the meeting for IOS, Android, Blackberry and Windows devices. The app is designed specifically for attendees of the WBG/IMF Spring Meetings and allows them to access the latest schedule information, manage their personal schedules, and provide feedback on events.
The AMWeb tool also offers comprehensive information on the agenda, maps, speakers, feedback and announcements.
There will be no video streaming available at the Forum this year, including Facebook Live streaming. But the organizers are encouraging participants to use of social media during the event and sessions. The hashtag for social media interactions is #SMCSO17. The CSPF is open to the media and journalists.
A Civil Society Roundtable with the World Bank Group Executive Directors will take place on Tuesday, April 18. It will be moderated and co-hosted by Halima Shariff, a media specialist and an advocate in global and national health in Tanzania. She manages the Advance Family Planning Project in Tanzania.
The WBG Executive Directors Roundtable is a part of the CSPF and an opportunity for CSOs to interact with the bank’s principals. The World Bank Board, as distinct from WB Management, holds discussions on operations, development and economic trends and strategic directions for the World Bank. The Board has oversight responsibility over the day-to-day operations of the World Bank, approves all lending operations, policies and strategies, and the various World Bank Group’s institutions’ budgets and audits.