Montenegro participated in the Bright Spots competition at the Open Government Partnership summit in London
Montenegrin mobile app “Be Responsible” was among seven 7 shortlisted initiatives vying for the Bright Spots award at the London summit of the Open Government Partnership, where more than 1,000 participants, from over 70 countries, were gathered on 31 October and 1 November. The winner was the Citizen Participatory Audit (CPA) project from Philippines.
The “Be Responsible” application and website were presented in London by Marija Novković, UNDP Montenegro Project Manager. “Be Responsible” allows citizens to report local problems – from illegal waste dumps, misuse of official vehicles and irregular parking, to failure to comply with tax regulations and traffic related problems.
The application and website have been created by the Creative Team of the Faculty of Electrical Engineering in Podgorica, and last spring they won first prize in the contest “Open Ideas for Montenegro” organized by NGO DigitalizujMe and UNDP Montenegro.
UNDP becomes a formal partner to the OGP
The World Bank Group (WBG), the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) pledged support to OGP member countries to promote open government and increase accountability.
Through its partnerships with four leading multilateral institutions the Open Government Partnership (OGP) is helping to mobilize new investments and technical support to strengthen open government reforms across the world.
Francis Maude, UK Minister for the Cabinet Office, said: “I am pleased to announce these four partnerships with leading multilateral institutions. Transparency is an idea whose time has come. As representatives from across the world gathered in London for the OGP’s Summit it is heartening to know that these institutions will be leveraging their weight and influence to promote good governance and openness.”
“In 2012, UNDP spent 1.1 billion dollars on democratic governance across 130 countries”, Helen Clark, UNDP Administrator, said. “Open government is an essential component of our work on inclusive governance. We aim to support citizens having a say on the decisions which affect their lives and help governments enhance transparency and accountability.”
Montenegro is a member of OGP since the Annual Summit in Brasilia in 2012. On the eve of this year’s OGP Summit, under the British co-chairmanship, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs and European Integration Igor Lukšić met with Francis Maude, UK Minister for the Cabinet Office. They exchanged experiences on the achievements and contributions of both governments in developing of this initiative.
UK Minister for the Cabinet Office Maude praised the activities that Montenegro has developed in the previous period in cooperation with non-governmental organizations, especially in terms of work on the top 10 most important measures defined during the previous summit by all Member States.
Deputy Prime Minister Lukšić underlined the importance of cooperation between civil society and government in the development of the “Be responsible” platform. “Including NGOs in Montenegro’s EU accession negotiation process, creation of public policies and the establishment of a platform for e-petitions additionally contributed to transparent government policy. Montenegro will in future be devoted to the innovation of OGP Action Plan in terms of redefining the existing measures and creating of new ones,” said Deputy Prime Minister Lukšić.
OGP is a multilateral initiative aimed at securing concrete commitments from governments to promote transparency, increase civic participation, fight corruption, and harness new technologies to make government more open, effective, and accountable. It is fostering news ways of the citizen and the state working together to solve common problems.
OGP was formally launched in September 2011 when eight founding governments – Brazil, Indonesia, Mexico, Norway, Philippines, South Africa, United Kingdom and United States – endorsed an Open Government Declaration, and published national OGP action plans with specific open government reform commitments. In just two years, the eight founding OGP countries have been joined by a further 53 countries bringing the total to 61 participating countries.
The combined population of the 60 countries participating in the OGP is 1.94 billion, based on the 2012 statistics from the World Bank (the latest available figures).