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NewsCLEAP harps on transparent, accountable Kaduna House of Assembly

CLEAP harps on transparent, accountable Kaduna House of Assembly

CLEAP harps on transparent, accountable Kaduna House of Assembly

By: Femi Mustapha

Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) and development partners, under the auspices of the Civil Society-Legislature Engagement and Accountability Platform (CLEAP), said they are set to work towards a robust, transparent, accountable, and responsive Kaduna State House of Assembly.

Mr. Yusuf Goje, a founding member of CLEAP and representing the Coalition of Associations for Leadership, Peace, Empowerment, and Development (CALPED), made this known in an interview with the media in Kaduna.

He explained that the platform drew inspiration from the Memorandum on Parliamentary Engagement adopted by the Open Government Partnership (OGP) Global Steering Committee in 2021.

According to him, the platform seeks to promote OGP principles and practices in the legislative processes to enable more openness and effective citizens’ participation and engagement.

Goje added that CLEAP would serve as a platform for dialogue and partnership between the legislature and civil society for effective horizontal and diagonal accountability.

He stressed that the platform would increase interaction between legislators and constituents to strengthen the legislative process and deepen the culture of open governance through law-making, oversight, and evaluation.

“This is crucial because the legislative arm of government is at the heart of democracy, being the institution of government that gives meaning to the government of the people, by the people, and for the people. It is also worthy of note that good governance can only be actualized when we have an effective legislature. To have an effective legislature, it must be open, transparent, accountable, responsible, and responsive to citizens’ engagement. This will build trust and collaboration between the legislature and civil society, thereby strengthening horizontal, diagonal, and vertical accountability,” he added.

Goje said that CLEAP would be working with stakeholders within and outside the Kaduna State House of Assembly to champion reforms that would promote a culture of legislative transparency and accountability. This, according to him, will serve as a permanent dialogue mechanism for joint action together with CSOs.

He further explained that CLEAP would be supported by Partnership to Engage, Reform and Learn (PERL), a governance program of the United Kingdom Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO).

Meanwhile, PERL’s State Lead Facilitator, Mr. Abel Adejor, had explained that in the next one year, the governance program would be supporting the state government and citizens to consolidate the gains of OGP recorded so far in the state.

Adejor identified the key priority areas of support as budget engagement, transition management, legislative engagement, audit, local governance, OGP, and mutual accountability framework.

The commitments are designed to promote open government, empower citizens, fight corruption, and harness new technologies to strengthen governance. In OGP, governments work with CSOs to create action plans with concrete reforms—a model that ensures citizens play a role in shaping and overseeing government reforms and programs.

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