Abia State government has expressed its readiness to show increased commitment to the Open Government Partnership (OGP) initiative to promote good governance, transparency and accountability in the State.
The Commissioner for Budget and Planning, Mr Kingsley Anosike, made this known on Tuesday, during a meeting between Abia Open Government Partnership (OGP ) State and non-state actors in Umuahia.
Mr. Anosike said that the State government was poised to deploy all the available resources to ensure that OGP would be a huge successes in the State. According to him, since the inception of the present administration led by Governor Alex Otti, several reforms had been evolved to correct the anomalies in the system.
He said that this showed that the present administration’s resolve to run a transparent and responsive government remains strong.
“OGP is a co-creation initiative aimed at improving governance, citizen participation in decision making process, fiscal transparency, anticorruption, and prudent usage of resources for the common good of all citizens.
“However, the OGP process is lead by the government and we are assembled here to show our commitment to this process.
“We view your visit as a testament to the efforts of this administration in strengthening transparency, accountability and probity in government.
“We assure you of our full cooperation in this partnership,” Anosike said.
In a remark, Mr Lawal Amodu, the Programme Coordinator of African Center for Leadership Strategy and Development, said that OGP can be best described as a facilitator of good governance and socioeconomic development.
Mr. Amodu said that 25 States in the country had signed into OGP and were at different stages of implementation. He added that the team was in Abia to meet with state and non-state actors on better ways to move OGP forward in the State.
The National Civil Societies Adviser of OGP, Mr Uchenna Arisukwu, expressed dismay that OGP had been static in Abia since 2018, when it joined the programme. He said that “the oxygen of OGP is political will and support”, and called on stakeholders to drive the state’s OGP action plan and implementation proces to make the programme succeed.
He commended the Governor Alex Otti led administration for showing commitment to OGP by reviewing the State’s action plan to align with its rebuilding agenda.
Also, Mr. Odinaka Eme, stressed the importance of NEEDS assessment as one of the basic tools in successful implementation of OGP and assured that the present administration is ready to work with international and multilateral platforms
The Co-Chair of Abia OGP Non-State Actors, Barr Agbonma Ukaobasi, reiterated the importance of OGP in governance process, adding that it is in line with global best practices. Barr. Ukaobasi appealed for cooperation between state and non-state actors, adding that the collaboration will be for the betterment of the people of Abia.