On 24th of September Open Government Partnership celebrated its three-year anniversary by organizing several events where Georgia was involved.
OGP civil society meeting
On September 24th meeting of OGP civil society leaders was held at the Head Office of the Ford Foundation in New York.
The three main topics covered by the agenda were:
1) to review some early successes that civil society actors have achieved through OGP and consider how we can use the OGP platform to advance progressive agendas;
2) to share ideas on how to broaden the base of reformers that push for more open and accountable government;
3) to update the participants on the new OGP 4 year strategy, especially on the plans for civil society engagement.
Giorgi Kldiashvili, the director of Institute for Development of Freedom of information (IDFI) presented at the talk show. The meeting was hosted by leaders of international organizations such as Ford Foundation, CIVICUS: the World Alliance for Citizen Participation, Transparency International (TI), Natural Resource Governance Institute (NRGI) and Twaweza.
Event with Higher Officials
At the same day, on 24th of September the high level event titled “Open Government Partnership: Citizen Action, Responsive Government” was held within the framework of the 69th United Nations General Assembly. At this event OGP was reaffirmed by the presence of 11 Heads of State and Government, over 30 Ministers, and more than 300 civil society leaders from around the world.
9 Leaders of state gave speeches, among them Irakli Gharibashvili, the Prime Minister of Georgia. He discussed the initiatives and innovative decisions reflected in the second action plan of “Open Government – Georgia 2014-2015” The prime minister said that Georgian government’s aim is to become even more accessible and accountable to citizens while empowering them. Georgia has some of the most innovative solutions to public procurement, public financial disclosure, and most importantly, public service delivery, said Irakli Gharibashvili in his speech.
Open Government Awards
After the leaders’ speeches OGP announced the winners of the first annual Open Government Awards, celebrating successful programs to increase citizen engagement in policy-making. Thirty-three countries participated the 2014 awards competition, and the top three finishers were as follows: third place was given to the Philippines for the Grassroots Participatory Budgeting program, Montenegro is on the second place for a public engagement campaign called “Be Responsible,” and Denmark achieved the first place for a Statutory Elected Senior Citizens’ Council.
OGP Steering Committee Meeting
OGP’s events continued the following day. On 25th of September OGP Steering Committee meeting was held where new elected members, including Georgia, were involved. OGP strategy 2015-2018, results and future initiatives were discussed at the meeting.
The Minister of Justice Tea Tsulukiani represents the government of Georgia in the Committee. She talked about implemented commitments by Georgia. Mrs Tsulukiani said that Georgia is advanced country in various directions concerning to accountable, openness accessibility and civil society participation.
The OGP is governed by the Steering Committee consisting of the equal number of government and non-governmental organization representatives.
The Result of OGP
Since the launch of OGP in 2011, the initiative has grown from eight to 65 participating countries, and from a handful of founding civil society leaders to hundreds of organizations engaged in OGP around the world. OGP countries have made over 2,000 open government reform commitments as part of 87 National Action Plans.