Kabul, Afghanistan- Wednesday, July 17th, 2019. Government and civil society organizations started the second round of developing a National Action Plan (NAP) for Open Government Partnership (OGP) involving all relevant governmental entities and around hundred civil society activist civil society organizations in Kabul. OGP is a global platform of around 79 countries where members have committed to improve governance through partnership with civil society. The goal behind the NAP II is to co-create commitments by government and civil society in order to improve government transparency and accountability and also to improve both the role of citizens and the use of technology in governance. The Afghan government joined the OGP in 2016 and will complete the implementation of the first round of its National Action Plan in a few months.
Ab. Subhan Rauf, Deputy Chief of Staff in the Office of the President and the Co-chair of the Open Government Partnership-Secretariat (OGP-S), who spoke at the Consultative Conference on Open Government Partnership NAP II, assured the audience that the government would take all necessary actions to improve the life of the people through the good governance requirements detailed in the NAP II. He said: “The National Action Plan I has certain achievements and we have certain lessons learned and we will use our experience to enhance the governance process and to fight against corruption using the NAP II process”.
Sayed Ikram Afzali, Executive Director of Integrity Watch Afghanistan and an elected member of the OGP-Afghanistan said, “There were ups and downs during NAP I in past two years. Now, certain mechanisms have been established which have the capacity to propose transformative commitments to government through which the Afghan government can improve its legitimacy via good governance and thereby regain the trust of people.” Mr. Afzali added, “Afghanistan has committed to make certain governance reform to the international community partners in the last 18 years, and has reported its progress and challenges to the global partners only. It is time the Afghan government to co-create commitments with and to its people and the international community should condition its aid based on the views of the people not the government reports to former.
Ainudding Bahadoori, Chairperson of the Access to Information Commission, who was speaking at the Consultative Conference on OGP NAP II stated that transparency is a pre-condition for the accountability of government to the people and the participation of citizens in the process of governance. He said, “Without timely, comprehensive and accessible information, government accountability to its people is not possible.” He requested the Afghan government, civil society organizations and international partners to mobilize all available resources to expedite the implementation of the new Access to Information Law and declared the readiness of his Commission to help in this process. He also asked that all stakeholders involved in NAP II make access to information a central commitment.
OGP is an international initiative that started in 2012. More than 75 countries have joined this initiative during the last eight years and created a number of commitments for betterment of the governance and have implemented some of them so far. OGP has four principles: Transparency, Accountability, Public Participation and Use of Technology in government service delivery. Mr. Yama Yari the current Minister of Transport of Afghanistan, submitted the membership application of Afghanistan to the OGP Global Summit in December 2016 and the OGP accepted it.
Afghanistan first national action plan had 13 commitments including: amendment of law on processing of legislative documents with goal of guaranteeing the participation of civil society in the legislative process, civil society monitoring of the asset registering process and the national strategy of fighting against corruption, participating of the civil society organizations and non-governmental organizations in the process of auditing the performance of some of government agencies; creating the entity for accreditation of health centers, monitoring the quality of education and higher education among others. The creation of National Action Plan II will take five months and there will be public conferences in the provinces to gather suggestions and commitments.
About 200 people from national and international organizations, a representative of all government entities and civil activists participated and submitted a number of commitments in order to be considered in the National Action Plan II.
NAP II Co – Creation (Inscription) Time Line
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