Addressing the meeting, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the APRM Secretariat, Prof. Eddy Maloka, said “partnership with OGP is very important to us. First, by working together, we will maximise our support to our member states and ensure our effectiveness and the impact of the work we do. We will also avoid duplication of efforts, promote synergy and harmonise our initiatives at country level and across the African continent…; we will reach out to African countries that are not yet members of the APRM family, in line with AU decisions on universal accession to APRM by 2023.” He took this opportunity to invite the delegations from Morocco and Cape Verde to facilitate their countries’ accession to APRM.
Prof. Eddy Maloka indicated that both institutions could join efforts and work for a more visible impact, without competition, by:
- raising the level of ambition and deepen the political will among our leaders, as a critical success factor for advancing the governance agenda in Africa;
- helping to strengthen national institutions – especially those that support democracy, openness and good governance;
- enforcing adherence to the rules of the game and rules of engagement among political actors;
- promoting experience sharing among neighbours in the region; and
- demonstrating that exporting democracy and good governance as well as openness as a foreign policy is not the way to go. Instead, countries should take ownership and lead in their internal affairs.
Prof. Maloka concluded his remarks by thanking OGP for associating APRM with the OGP Africa Ministerial Meeting and reiterated that APRM is ready for further collaboration with OGP.
For his part, the CEO of OGP, Mr. Sanjay Pradham, indicated that “signing the MoU between APRM and OGP, is like planting a seed that will become a springboard to revitalise and re-energise the governance agenda in Africa in the service of the citizens. He explained that APRM brings the overarching governance platform for Africa, which is an important ingredient for OGP.
Expressing his optimism about the collaboration between APRM and OGP, Mr. Sanjay Pradham acknowledged that both institutions share the same goals: APRM is fundamentally about transforming closed governance into people-centred governance in Africa. On the other hand, OGP also tries to empower citizens to shape and oversee governments. He noted that APRM and OGP share 11member states in Africa and illustrated how the two mechanisms are complementary, with APRM providing a long-term vision and OGP offering an opportunity to convert that long-term vision into a two-year concrete commitment action plan.
Mr. Sanjay Pradham concluded his remarks by calling on everyone present at the meeting to join forces to revive high-level political commitment to the good governance agenda.
He announced that APRM and OGP, in partnership with the African Union, will jointly host a high-level Symposium that will bring together African leaders to reflect on anti-corruption as a priority concern in both APRM and OGP. He expressed the hope that the joint initiative will generate a positive and strong impact in terms of commitments.
Commenting on the APRM/OGP project, the Legal Advisor in the Office of the Deputy President of Kenya, Dr. Korir Sing’ Oei, opined that the APRM-OGP collaboration is a positive step for good governance which, if seriously managed, will have a dramatic impact as the two institutions seek to face the challenges that continue to imperil the continent.