Nigeria, Argentina, Romania, France Elected to the OGP Steering Committee

Mukaleni Dimba, Co-Chair, OGP Steering Committee
Mukaleni Dimba, Co-Chair, OGP Steering Committee

Following a Steering Committee government elections in the first quarter of 2018, the governments of Nigeria and Argentina were elected alongside those of Romania and France, which were re-elected to lead the Open Government Partnership (OGP), for a three-year term, beginning from October 1, 2018.

The OGP is a global initiative which brings together government and civil society leaders to co-create and co-implement action plans that make governments more inclusive, responsive, and accountable to citizens.

The Steering Committee government elections took place as the terms of Chile, France, Indonesia, and Romania ended. Comprised of 22 members – 11 from government and 11 from civil society – the Steering Committee is the executive, decision-making body of OGP saddled with the responsibility to develop, promote and safeguard the values, principles and interests of OGP.

In a statement issued in Washington on December 3, 2017, OGP CEO Sanjay Pradhan enthusiastically welcomed the election of the new Steering Committee governments. “We are delighted at the election of Argentina and Nigeria and the re-election of France and Romania to the OGP Steering Committee and congratulate them on being elected to this important global leadership body.”

“Given dramatic changes in our geopolitical context, our Steering Committee represents a new coalition of global leaders standing up for openness and democracy,” Pradhan added.

Minister for Justice and Attorney-General of the Federal Republic of Nigeria who is also a Co-Chair of the OGP Nigeria, Mr Abubakar Malami, stated that the government is grateful for the opportunity and is determined to advance the open government agenda.

Mr Malami said: “The government of Nigeria is excited at the opportunity to serve as a member of the OGP Steering Committee. Nigeria is committed to improving anti-corruption measures on asset recovery and the establishment of beneficial ownership register as well as citizen engagement through the use of technology. We look forward to working with other countries, particularly in Africa, to further the OGP principles.”

Also, the Minister of Modernization in Argentina, Andrés Ibarra, highlighted the importance of institutions like OGP to hold governments accountable and to better connect them with civil society and other citizens. He added, “This is an important acknowledgment to Argentina as a country and to the commitment and work done jointly by the National and Provincial Government, the civil society, the legislative and the judicial branches. As part of the Committee, we will actively foster ambitious reforms working together with the community, raising the impact of our work.”

The Secretary of State in charge of Digital Affairs from France, Mounir Mahjoubi, thanked OGP participants for the opportunity to renew its mandate in the Steering Committee and is determined to continue working and supporting the OGP community. Mahjoubi said, “We are convinced that it is only with Open Government Partnership that we will be able to lay the groundwork to take full advantage of the opportunities offered by digital technology and, thus, to meet the challenges it represents for our democracies. The important hope for more transparency and openness that the Partnership has provided requires that we put all our energy into sustaining its action, and that we contribute collectively to its development.”

In a statement, the government of Romania also said that it looks forward to joining the Steering Committee for a second term and is  committed to continuing to champion open government during their its mandate. “On behalf of the Government of Romania, we welcome the news of our re-election for a second mandate in the OGP Steering Committee and look forward to continue our work in this position by playing an active role in promoting and upholding OGP values globally and contributing to shaping the Partnership’s future.”