UNDP chief Clark calls for global partnership to boost transparency

29 Oct 15

The Open Government Partnership and the United Nations Development Programme must work together to build transparent and inclusive institutions around the world, UNDP administrator Helen Clark has said.

In an address to the Open Government Partnership’s third global summit in Mexico yesterday, Clark noted that Sustainable Development Goal 16 committed nations to ensuring accountable and transparent institutions, inclusive decision-making and public access to information.

“On every continent, we see many governments and parliaments moving to plan incorporation of the SDGs into national visions, set up cross-party parliamentary groupings, and forge new partnerships within their societies around the SDGs,” she said.

“The role of civil society is crucial for the success of the SDGs. We need open, vibrant and safe civic spaces within which civil society actors, including always women and youth, can contribute effectively to building more peaceful, just and inclusive societies.”

She praised OGP members for their making a head start in securing progress towards SDG 16 and noted the role of UNDP in supporting this work.

For example, in El Salvador, the UNDP has facilitated a civil society engagement exercise to help the country develop its OGP action plan. UNDP has also worked with the Chilean Congress on legislative reforms to overhaul regulations and practices on ethics, transparency and anti-corruption.

“Going forward, I believe it will be useful for OGP to align its work on national action plans with countries’ plans for the SDGs,” Clark said.

“Let us explore how we can work more closely together. Goal 16 – like all the other goals – is ambitious, and cannot be achieved by an single agency, country or organisation alone.”

The OGP is a multilateral initiative that launched in 2011 with the aim of securing commitments from government to improve transparency, fight corruption and strengthen governance.

Its eight founding governments are the UK, US, Brazil, Indonesia, Mexico, Norway, the Philippines and South Africa. Another 57 have since committed to join the partnership.

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