On 1st of February, the Chairperson of the Parliament of Georgia held a meeting with the accredited journalists. The Chairperson reviewed the activities necessary to be carried out for increasing openness of the legislative activities. David Usupashvili talked about the success achieved in regards with the openness and transparency of the Parliament of Georgia, which were broadly recognized (Please, also refer to Suneeta Kaimal Refers to Georgia as a Successful Example of OGP, Heads of IDFI Meet with the President of the Legislative Assembly of Costa Rica). At the OGP Global Summit Inter-Factional Group of the Parliament of Georgia was awarded with the OGP Champion’s Award.
David Usupashvili highlighted that the award was a result of a close collaboration of the MPs and the representatives of the SCOs. Within the scopes of the project “Supporting Involvement of the Parliament of Georgia in Open Government Partnership” supported by the UNDP and European Union and implemented by the Institute for Development of Freedom of Information (IDFI), Inter-Factional Group of the Parliament and the Open Parliament Working Group elaborated the Open Parliament Georgia Action Plan 2015-2016. The Action Plan encompasses 18 commitments based on the following principles of the OGP: Access to information, citizen engagement, accountability, technologies and innovation.
The Chairperson of the Parliament noted: “We have done a lot for increasing legislative openness and transparency. We are the champions in this field. It [the Champions Award] was truly a serious recognition of the work undertaken in the legislative activities and was a result of the close collaboration among the MPs and the representatives of the SCOs, which needs to be developed. By the end of December we established a Parliamentary Council which will work on these topics. The meetings of the Council will be launched soon as we have an action plan with ambitious commitments and we will have very good initiatives.”
On December 18th, 2015, the Parliament of Georgia adopted the amendments to the Parliament’s Rules of Procedure on the third hearing. According to the amendment (Article 107 (23) (the number correlates with the Georgian alphabet)) Permanent Parliamentary Council was established in order to ensure transparency of the legislative activities, and coordinative and effective management of the issues related to openness of the Parliament. Provision and composition of the Permanent Parliamentary Council on Open and Transparent Governance is regulated by the order of the Chairperson of the Parliament (Rules of procedure of the Parliament of Georgia, Article 2831.
The Open Parliament Georgia Action Plan also considers the creation of the Consultative Group comprised by the representatives of the Non-governmental and International Organizations. The aim of the Consultative Group will be assisting the Parliamentary Council in implementing and monitoring the Action Plan.
Currently, IDFI with the financial assistance of UNDP and EU is implementing the project “Supporting the Parliament of Georgia in Implementation of the Open Parliament Georgia Action Plan” aiming at supporting the Permanent Parliamentary Council on Open and Transparent Governance in carrying out the activities laid out in the Open Parliament Georgia Action Plan 2015-2016.