OGP in the News: 22 April 2016

A new weekly series providing a round-up of media attention received by the Open Government Partnership throughout the world.

This week press related to OGP was most intensive in Mexico, where the process of drafting the country’s 2016-2018 National Action Plan (NAP) kicked off. In over 40 articles from large news outlets including El Universal, Terra, and others, the inauguration meeting was covered and the purpose and nature of developing Mexico’s NAP were described. Of the issues on the agenda for the country’s third National Action Plan, corruption seemed to be at the forefront of the public’s mind. During the event, government officials signaled: “Fighting corruption is one of the great goals we have in front of us. [W]e are convinced that opening up to dialogue and citizen participation in the political life of the country will contribute enormously to this fight.

In fact, the occasion of the NAP drafting process sparked renewed and vigorous public debate on the subject. Members of the leading opposition party of the country stated their desire to tackle corruption more aggressively and cited OGP as a means to accomplish this. The party’s president described corruption as the country’s main problem in a piece in the esteemed Aristegui Noticias, and representative Marko Cortés alluded to the significance of the new NAP by calling for political leaders to make this week a moment to move toward greater transparency. He stated, “we cannot permit Mexico to continue to drown in a sea of impunity… because of this [our party] will promote a National Action Plan of Open Government Partnership,” and added that he agreed “with voices from civil society that demand that some sort of corruption crimes standard with clear sanctions be applied to us.”

Elsewhere in the Americas, OGP was cited in connection with a pair of even more high-profile and impassioned national debates—namely, that concerning the coming impeachment of Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff and that revolving around United States’ presidential elections. Both ABC News (along with over a dozen of its affiliates) and The Daily Beast ran stories on the praise that presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton heaped on Rousseff during an OGP event in Brasilia in 2012. Given the allegations of corruption that currently surround the Brazilian leader, the stories point to the irony of Clinton hailing Rousseff for her “commitment to openness [and] transparency.”

Corruption was also a theme in Kenya, where a piece on combating graft in AllAfrica.com, which urged the country to “deepen engagement” with OGP, was subsequently reproduced by a number of other outlets. And on a brighter note in Kenya, following last week’s announcement of the 15 locales participating in OGP’s new subnational pilot program—which has continued to generate news and analysis in different parts of the world—this article on the project in Elgeyo-Marakwet County appeared in Business Daily Africa.

And last but not least, in the world of social media, the big news this week was that the 2016 OGP Global Summit will be held in Paris in December. The announcement received a strong response on Facebook and was the subject of tweets and tweets upon retweets and retweets. #OGP16 even trended on Twitter in Paris on Wednesday. Vivement #OGP16!

Authors: Alex Vedovi
Topics: Anti-corruption
Filed Under: OGP News