Gov. Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna State has reiterated his administration’s commitment for a robust citizens engagement in governance processes in the state.
El-Rufai made the commitment in a video broadcast to wrap up the 2022 Open Government Partnership (OGP) Week in Kaduna on Saturday.
He said that the civic space had proven to be robust and effective in the state as evident in the seamless collaboration between state and non-state actors during the 2022 OGP Week.
According to him, the state government will continue to broaden the civic space and engage with citizens to improve their trust in the government and the governance processes.
He explained that the OGP Technical Working Groups (TWGs) and State Steering Committee, made up of civil society members and government, serves as a productive platform for implementation of the state’s Action Plan, 2021 to 2022.
“At this point, we recognise the various accountability mechanisms working around the OGP, such as Kaduna Basic Education Accountability Mechanism (KADBEAM) and Kaduna Maternal Accountability Mechanism (KADMAM).
“Others are Kaduna Social Protection Accountability Coalition (KADSPAC) and Local Government Accountability Mechanism (LGAM).
“We recognised their active and effective engagement so far and we will continue to open the civic space for stronger citizen engagement,” he said.
He explained that the Kaduna State Government had joined the OGP in 2016 as part of efforts to promote transparency, accountability and improve civic participation in governance.
He added that the OGP Week was a global event that required OGP members to implement activities around open governance.
The governor said that in commemorating the 2022 OGP Week, May 16 to May 20, Kaduna State along with citizens’ groups carried out activities around Community Development Charter (CDC) Protocol Validation.
He said: “The step is to further strengthen the innovative CDC process that allows citizens to influence the state annual budget.
“There was also the high-level Multi-Stakeholders Forum dialogue on the progress of the OGP State Action Plan with community stakeholders in the state.
“Another activity is a community sensitisation on OGP in Igabi and Kaduna South local government areas, towards increasing citizens’ participation for improved service delivery in education and health sectors.
“Other activities include dialogue on Curbing Systemic Corruption and Recognising Open Contracting Data Heroes: Publishers and Users, and media engagement by the Commissioner/Government Co-chair, OGP, on successes recorded so far.”
He disclosed that the relevant Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) have been mandated to prioritise the implementation of the new commitment areas in the 2021 to 2023 Action Plan.
“We want the OGP community to note that we have reaffirmed our commitment to open governance.
“We shall maintain focus and ensure that “we finish our tenure as strongly as we started.
“This, we shall do within the principles of the OGP and our mantra of putting people first,” El-Rufai said.
Newsmen reports that the OGP week celebrated reformers who have successfully opened governance around the world and offer space for co-creation of reforms with citizens to tackle pressing challenges.
The week also presented an opportunity to share experiences, lessons learnt and achievements.