By S. Siapha Mulbah
The Open Government Partnership (OGP) Secretariat says it is embarrassing that the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court and other members of the Judiciary are attesting to corruption at that branch of government.
Describing the Judiciary as the rule of law branch of the government, the Secretariat said there are concerns being raised through testimonies about the level of corruption in the judicial system.
At the same time; the OGP is seeking the national government’s attention to demonstrate a greater political will in championing the partnership in the country.
The OGP Secretariat wants the government identify allies in the civil society and support democratic reformers within government as a means of promoting a free space in the political arena of the country.
The secretariat also called on the three branches of government to demonstrate transparency, accountability, and responsiveness to their citizens by ensuring the full implementation of their respective commitments to the 4th OGP National Action Plan (NAP).
According to the head of the OGP Secretariat, Ralph Jimmeh, the Legislature needs to exercise a high degree of leadership by ensuring the installation of the automated electronic voting equipment mentioned by the President in the 2021 summit for democracy.
Jimmeh said that legislative openness by use of voting equipment will afford legislators’ constituents to understand their voting habits and history which will induce issue-based elections.
Addressing newsmen yesterday at the Ministry of Information, Jimmeh explained that the OGP 4th National Action Plan was launched in February of 2021 to impact the lives of the citizens and bring them closer to their government.
“The fourth OGP national plan was launched on February 10, 2021, rated by the Independent Review Mechanism as the most transformative NAP that Liberia has Co-created and that, if fully implemented will bring government closer to its citizens, improve service delivery, promote openness and transparency, thereby reducing public distrust in government’s activities,” Mr. Jimmeh narrated.
The head of the secretariat emphasized the implementation of the NAP as relevant tool of the open government’s partnership and that if a full cabinet endorsement of the plan is led by President George Weah, there will be a strong evidence of the government’s willingness and seriousness to fully implement the OGP action plan.
“The secretariat is therefore calling on all ministries, agencies and commissions that have commitment within the current NAP to accelerate their delivery on their specific commitments, as the failure to do so will be counterproductive for Liberia for the fourth successive time,” Jimmeh intimated.
Meanwhile, the Secretariat is calling on the Judiciary to train more magistrates at the James A. A. Pierre Judicial Institute which consists of one of the deliverables in the OGP NAP.
By S. Siapha Mulbah