Skip Navigation
Liberia

Legislative Monitoring Database (LR0027)

Overview

At-a-Glance

Action Plan: Liberia Action Plan 2017-2019

Action Plan Cycle: 2017

Status: Inactive

Institutions

Lead Institution: Governance Commission

Support Institution(s): Governance Commission, LACC, LRC, and MOFA. CAPDOG, CENTAL, CUPPADL, CEMESP, IREDD, LMC, iLab Liberia.

Policy Areas

E-Government, Fiscal Openness, Public Participation, Publication of Budget/Fiscal Information, Regulatory Governance

IRM Review

IRM Report: Liberia Implementation Report 2017-2019, Liberia Design Report 2017-2019

Starred: No

Early Results: Did Not Change

Design i

Verifiable: Yes

Relevant to OGP Values: Access to Information , Civic Participation , Technology

Potential Impact:

Implementation i

Completion:

Description

What is the public problem that the commitment will address?: The public in Liberia has very little knowledge of where critical bills and laws are in terms of approval within the legislative process. This prevents them from monitoring these bills and advocating for their passage at the relevant moments. Understanding where critical bills and laws (such as the Whistleblower and Witness Protection Acts, Decent Work Bill and Local Government Act) are being held up within the legislative process can help us to understand where and when pressure should be applied to support the completion of the process and ensure the rights of citizens.; What is the commitment?: This commitment will create a database to track laws and bills within the legislature; and provide regular reports on the status of these laws and bills matched with roundtables to allow for discussion.; How will the commitment contribute to solve the public problem?: This effort to open up the legislative process will provide citizens with information they need to understand how bills and law are progressing. It will create space for public hearings and citizen comments on draft legislation, and the basis for relevant advocacy campaigns.; Why is this commitment relevant to OGP values?: The commitment will provide an opportunity for citizens and civil society organizations to track, support and organize around the legislative processes. It will open up parliament to public scrutiny and public participation.

IRM Midterm Status Summary

IRM End of Term Status Summary

1. Develop a Legislative Monitoring Database

Language of the commitment as it appears in the action plan:

"This commitment will create a database to track laws and bills within the legislature; and provide regular reports on the status of these laws and bills matched with roundtables to allow for discussion."

Milestones:

  1. Track status of bills in the House of Representatives and Senate through ongoing monitoring;
  2. Provide analysis on the progress of bills, the sponsor of each bill and who has voted for each bill;
  3. Publish ongoing results and analysis in quarterly reports and online through a searchable database;
  4. Work with relevant groups inside and outside government through round-tables to push for the passage of critical bills when needed

Editorial Note: For the complete text of this commitment, please see Liberia's action plan at: https://www.opengovpartnership.org/documents/liberia-action-plan-2017-2019/

IRM Design Report Assessment

IRM Implementation Report Assessment

● Verifiable: Yes

● Relevant: Yes

Access to Information

Civic Participation

● Potential impact: Minor

Completion: Not Started

Did it Open Government? Did Not Change

This commitment aimed to develop a database to track and monitor the progress of laws and bills in the legislature, provide quarterly reports on the status of these laws and bills, and conduct roundtables for civic discussion. It sought to address the opaque nature of the legislative process, and citizens' belief that legislators do not fulfill their mandate and that they do not work in Liberians' best interest. [1] At the time of this commitment's formulation, the Institute for Research and Democratic Development (IREDD), a civil society organization, independently compiled reports tracking the legislature's and individual legislators' activities. [2] The Liberia Legal Information Institute managed free online access to national legal information, [3] and Liberians usually voiced opinions on pending legislation through civic protest. [4]

This commitment was not started by the end of the action plan period. The primary factor that contributed to the lack of implementation was inadequate support and buy-in for implementation from the legislature. [5] The legislature was not involved in the formulation of this commitment, and engagement to gain its support began only during the implementation period. As the commitment was not started, there was no change in government practice at the end of the implementation period. A lack of action by the legislature inhibited several commitments in this action plan. Therefore, the IRM recommends that the OGP Secretariat and partners conduct outreach to sensitize members of the legislature to OGP processes and the value of open government reforms. Partnering with reform-minded allies within the legislature will likely assist the implementation of future commitments.

Meanwhile, IREDD continued its independent work issuing reports and statements on legislative voting and conduct based on data compiled by monitors assigned at the House of Representatives and the Senate. IREDD also manages Liberian Lawmakers Watch, [6] a searchable, database-driven website that expanded access to reported information. In addition, the media brought attention to legislators' refusal to use electronic voting machines provided by the National Democratic Institute in 2010. These machines would have facilitated the recording and tracking of legislative activity. However, the media reported that not all legislators used the machines or used them consistently, [7] and reports noted that the machines no longer work. [8]

[1] Andrew Nimley, Special Assistant, Office of the Chief Justice of Liberia, Supreme Court of Liberia, interview by IRM researcher, 17 October 2018.
[2] Strengthening Legislative Accountability and Transparency in Liberia, IREDD Final Legislative Report Card 2016 (Monrovia, Liberia: Institute for Research and Democratic Development, 2016).
[3] Liberia Legal Information Institute homepage, http://www.liberlii.org, accessed December 2019.
[4] International Reporting Mechanism, Liberia 2017–2019 Design Report (Washington, DC: Open Government Partnership, 2019), https://www.opengovpartnership.org/documents/liberia-design-report-2017-2019-for-public-comment/.
[5] G. Ralph Jimmeh Jr. (OGP Liberia Secretariat), interview by IRM researcher, September 2019.
[6] Liberian Lawmakers Watch homepage, https://www.liberianlawmakerswatch.org, accessed December 2019.
[7] G. Senah, "No Voting Records Available at Legislature at Lawmakers Abandon Electronic Voting System," The Bush Chicken, 2 February 2017, https://bushchicken.com/no-voting-records-available-at-legislature-as-lawmakers-abandon-electronic-voting-system/, accessed December 2019.
[8] R. Sieh, "Liberia: Neglected World Bank Electronic Voting Machines Raise Credibility Issues in Justice Ja'neh's Impeachment," Front Page Africa, 2 April 2019, https://frontpageafricaonline.com/politics/liberia-neglected-usaid-electronic-voting-machines-raise-credibility-issues-in-justice-janehs-impeachment/, accessed December 2019.

Commitments

  1. Extend capacity and transparency of judicial system

    LR0039, 2020, Access to Justice

  2. Create public beneficial ownership register

    LR0037, 2020, Access to Information

  3. Publish budget information online

    LR0038, 2020, Aid

  4. Promote integrity within institutions and schools

    LR0040, 2020, Anti-Corruption

  5. Increase transparency and inclusivity of public contracts

    LR0041, 2020, Access to Information

  6. Train health professionals and open health data

    LR0042, 2020, Access to Information

  7. Make legislative process more transparent and participatory

    LR0043, 2020, E-Government

  8. Enhance compliance and transparency in tax system

    LR0044, 2020, E-Government

  9. Implement transparent SGBV roadmap

    LR0045, 2020, Access to Information

  10. Increase youth engagement in national policy

    LR0046, 2020, Marginalized Communities

  11. Monitor fulfillment of commitments

    LR0047, 2020, E-Government

  12. Publish latest health data

    LR0048, 2020, Access to Information

  13. Legislative Monitoring Database

    LR0027, 2017, E-Government

  14. Publication of Budget Documents

    LR0028, 2017, Anti-Corruption

  15. Freedom of Information (FOI) Act

    LR0029, 2017, Access to Information

  16. Citizen Monitoring for the Justice System

    LR0030, 2017, Access to Justice

  17. Feedback Mechanism to Build Accountability of the LNP

    LR0031, 2017, Access to Information

  18. Capacity Building for Integrity in Government

    LR0032, 2017, Anti-Corruption

  19. Transparency in the Land Authority

    LR0033, 2017, E-Government

  20. Accountability and Value for Money Through Open Contracting

    LR0034, 2017, Access to Information

  21. Beneficial Ownership Registry

    LR0035, 2017, Access to Information

  22. Open Data/Citizen Navigation Portal

    LR0036, 2017, Access to Information

  23. Starred commitment Commercial Land Use Rights Information

    LR0011, 2015, Capacity Building

  24. Open Aid Portal and Publication of Aid Data

    LR0012, 2015, Access to Information

  25. Link Financial Management System to Aid Management Platform

    LR0013, 2015, Aid

  26. Facilitate Tracking of EVD Funds

    LR0014, 2015, Access to Information

  27. Starred commitment Implementation of the New Jury Law

    LR0015, 2015, Public Participation

  28. Citzen Monitoring of Justice System

    LR0016, 2015,

  29. Civic Education and Citizen Engagement Around Offline Tools

    LR0017, 2015,

  30. Know Your Rights' Initiative

    LR0018, 2015, Justice

  31. Passage of Whistleblower Protection Act

    LR0019, 2015,

  32. Transparency Hubs

    LR0020, 2015, Public Participation

  33. Public Service Integrity

    LR0021, 2015, Anti-Corruption

  34. Citizen Feedback Platform.

    LR0022, 2015, E-Government

  35. e-Government

    LR0023, 2015, Capacity Building

  36. Public Expenditure Management Systems

    LR0024, 2015, Capacity Building

  37. Public Safety/ Law Enforecement Reform

    LR0025, 2015, E-Government

  38. Open Data Portal

    LR0026, 2015, Access to Information

  39. Appoint Public Information Officers (PIOs)

    LR0007, 2015, Capacity Building

  40. Popularize Freedom of Information (Foi) Law

    LR0008, 2015, Access to Information

  41. Expand Open Budget Initiative

    LR0009, 2015, Access to Information

  42. Public Information on Land and Natural Resource Reform

    LR0010, 2015, Anti-Corruption

  43. Increase Access to Public Information

    LR0001, 2013, Access to Information

  44. Open Budget Initiative

    LR0002, 2013, E-Government

  45. Extractive Industries Transparency

    LR0003, 2013, Anti-Corruption

  46. Citizens’ Participation and Dialogue

    LR0004, 2013, Public Participation

  47. Starred commitment Accountability and Integrity

    LR0005, 2013, Anti-Corruption

  48. Technology and Innovation

    LR0006, 2013, Access to Information

Open Government Partnership