Open Government Partnership Afghanistan (OGPA) Civil Society Forum Meeting

On 9th October 2017, Mr. Najeebullah Yalghoz Najeeb, represented AJO in the Open Government Partnership Afghanistan (OGPA) Civil Society Forum Meeting in IWA Office.  The purpose of the meeting was to introduce the OGPA to the forum members and discuss the creation of the OGP Advisory Group. Formation of an advisory group for guiding and monitoring the normal functions of OGPA Forum members was proposed by Selection Committee and in the initial meetings of Civil Society on OGP.
 
The meeting was opened with opening remarks by Executive Director of IWA and followed by remarks from representatives of other CSOs. Beside discussing about the positivity of the Open Government Participation which is a national process, the importance of the Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) and Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) role in making the  government accountable and transparent, the participants also dicussed the problems ahead of OGP membership in Afghanistan. Few of such problems included structure, selection committee, and performance of OGP in a country like Afghanistan. Additionally, in a country like Afghanistan corruption, trafficking in Person, high rate of civilians’ casualities due to armed conflict, and etc. are very common and OGP will not run smoothly; hence the CSOs and NGOs should have more involvement with OGP to bring more reformation.
 
Afghanistan received OGP members in December 2016. At the OGP Global Summit 2016 in Paris, on 9th December 2016, the NUG representative at the conference announced its membership to the OPG. The Government of Afghanistan (GoA), as an eligible country, submitted its letter of intent to join the Open Government Partnership (OGP) in December 2016, and committed to promoting the core values of the program: citizen participation, transparency, accountability and finally innovation and technology.
 
OGP requires all its participating countries to “commit to developing their country action plans through a multi stakeholder process, with the active engagement of citizens and civil society. Afghanistan’s National Action Plan is prepared for two years. After the mutual approval of the NAP, the government starts the implementation and the civil society monitors its implementation.  OGP Afghanistan will then establish the following working groups with Civil Society:

- Fiscal Openness Working Group
- Legislative Openness Working Group
- Anti-Corruption Working Group
- Open Data Working Group
- Natural Resources Working Group