Malawi rekindles interest in global body


By Deogratias Mmana:

Malawi has operated without an action plan on Open Government Partnership (OGP) since 2018, forcing the International OGP Steering Committee to, at a meeting held on March 24 this year, designate the country as an inactive member.

In 2013, Malawi joined the OGP, an international grouping of countries that seek to foster good governance and improve relations between citizens and their governments.


Currently, the OGP has about 80 countries working to implement open government commitments to promote greater transparency, accountability, inclusivity and citizen engagement in policy-making.

Deputy Secretary to the Office of the President and Cabinet (OPC) Janet Banda said following the ‘inactive’ status that was bestowed on Malawi, President Lazarus Chakwera has directed the Secretary to the President and Cabinet to initiate the process of reactivating Malawi’s membership into the OGP initiative.

She said Chakwera made the directive when he presided over the National Anti-Corruption Conference in Blantyre on July 25 2022.


“To this end, development of the OGP National Action Plan was embraced by the executive pillar within the agenda of the National Integrity Committee as one of the commitments that should be done within the 20 week anti-corruption campaign period from July 26 2022 to December 8,” Banda said.

She was speaking in Lilongwe at a validation meeting of the National Action Plan (Nap) on OGP partnership in Malawi. The meeting was validating the draft Nap which consultant Henry Chingaipe presented.

According to Banda, the draft report proposes five thematic areas which include anti-corruption, open Parliament, natural resources, access to information and digital governance.

“It is our expectation that the adoption of a new Nap will prompt re-activation of Malawi’s ‘active’ status in the OGP before this year comes to an end.

“I also consider that the proposed themes are realistic and critical to enable Malawi to achieve positive impact at the end of the two-year implementation period,” Banda said.

OGP membership obliges the government to— in consultation with non-State actors such as civil society, media and the private sector—develop a Nap every two years as a key deliverable before joining the international body.

Meanwhile, Council for Non-Governmental Organisations Executive Director Ronald Mtonga has said there is a need to incorporate political leaders in the new Nap that becomes effective next year.

“With the directive to have OGP, civil society is ready to be part of the process of making Malawi a better place [for everyone],” Mtonga said.

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