By: Abubakar Dalhatu-Abuja
The Anambra State Commissioner for Economic Planning and Budget Mr. Mark Okoye has been tasked with leading the South East efforts at establishing and implementing the Transparency and Development imperatives of the Open Government Partnership (OGP) and achieving the set objectives of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in the Zone.
The initiative which is a Joint State and Non-State Actors Multi-Stakeholder Platform for OGP and SDGs was applauded by the Nigeria OGP National Secretariat and has been recommended for adoption to other geopolitical zones in the country.
In his two year term of office Mr. Mark Okoye ( who is representing the Government of Anambra State ) is to be assisted by Professor Eugene Nweke the vice chairman and incoming chairman and a team selected from the five states that make up the South east Zone.
Anambra State will host the secretariat and provide supporting infrastructure for the initiative.
The Multi-Stakeholder Initiative known as SOROCHIA- (Igbo for “…be part of government”) is aimed at challenging South East governments and societies to improve governance, spread good practices, reform legislations, improve public participation and closely monitor implementation and impact of public programs.
It will provide a platform for peer learning and shared experiences and utilize economies of scale to reduce costs in the introduction and implementation of the OGP principles and SDGs in the South East Zone.
Sorochia prioritizes five thematic areas:
Legal and Regulatory Reforms;
Public Service Improvement;
Public Participation and Inclusiveness through Technology & Innovation;
Better Management of Public Resources; and
Improved Security, Environment and Living Conditions.
Sorochia will establish technical working groups and collaborate with development partners to ensure transparency and accountability in public programs in a citizens centric manner. This will be cascaded to the local governments and communities utilizing existing formal and informal platforms whilst ensuring inclusivity.
The leadership structure include:
Government of Anambra State
Mr. Mark Okoye
Ebonyi State Non-State Actors
Professor Eugene Nweke
Government of Enugu State
Dr. Kingsley Ude
INCOMING – SECRETARY
Government of Abia State
MR. Amaechi Chukwu
Anambra State Non-State Actors
Prince Chris Azor
INCOMING – ORGANIZING SECRETARY
Enugu State Non-State Actors
Mr. Francis Chieze
Imo State Non-State Actors
Mr. Bede Mgbemena
GOVERNMENT/NON-STATE ACTORS LIAISON
Abia State Non-State Actors
COMRADE Nnanna Nwafor
Sir Agabaidu Chukwuemeka Jideani