At a meeting with Ambassador Prasad Kariyawasam on February 1, Chief Executive Officer of the Open Government Partnership (OGP) Sanjay Pradhan stated, that the election of the Sri Lankan government two years ago on the plank of good governance gives Sri Lanka the opportunity to play an important role in promoting open government principles.
The Ambassador recalled that Sri Lanka was invited to join the OGP in 2015, in recognition of the measures taken by the government to strengthen good governance, combat corruption and strengthen democracy in the country since coming into office in January 2015. In October 2015, Sri Lanka participated in the OGP Summit held in Mexico City and became a participating country by endorsing the OGP Declaration committing “to foster a global culture of open government that empowers and delivers for citizens and advances the ideals of open and participatory 21st century government.”
In keeping with its OGP commitments, Sri Lanka has already submitted the National Action Plan of Sri Lanka for the OGP to the Washington based OGP Secretariat. At the meeting, Ambassador Kariyawasam handed over a letter from Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera, formally conveying the National Action Plan and reiterating Sri Lanka’s commitment to implement Open Government principles.
Launched in 2011, OGP provides an international platform for domestic reformers committed to making their governments more open, accountable, and responsive to citizens. With this aim, OGP aims to secure concrete commitments from governments to promote transparency, empower citizens, fight corruption and harness cutting edge technologies to strengthen governance. From its initial eight countries, OGP has now grown to 75 participating countries.
The OGP National Action Plan was developed through a consultative process in partnership with relevant ministries, and civil society partners in all provinces of the country. The National Action Plan was drafted by a Joint Working Committee comprising government officials and civil society partners and will be implemented over a period of two years. The Cabinet appointed a National Steering Committee under the Chairmanship of the President, with the participation of the Prime Minister, relevant Cabinet members and members of the Joint Working Committee which will oversee and provide guidance in implementation.
Representing Sri Lanka in the OGP Summit in December 2016 in Paris, Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera observed the importance of OGP values to build trust in government and highlighted the reforms being undertaken by the Sri Lankan government to uphold the vision of transparent, inclusive and participatory governance.
Embassy of Sri Lanka