Open Government Partnership – Red Card for NZ?

New Zealand risks being formally ejected from the Open Government Partnership (OGP).

The Government has sent a letter to the OGP citing the need for a four-month extension on submitting its second Open Government Partnership National Action Plan (NAP). The explanation given is that the processes being considered to make the engagement processes more inclusive means that New Zealand will not be able to submit its 2016-18 National Action Plan by 30 June 2016, but will undertake to do so by the end of October 2016.

The OGP does not grant extensions

While TINZ is thrilled to hear that the engagement process is a priority, this delay has put New Zealand's membership of the OGP at risk.

The OGP does not grant extensions. Their Government Point of Contact Manual states:

  1. Countries should deliver their NAP and Self-Assessment Reports on time. This calendar provides advance notice on all due dates in order to avoid future delays. In order to take full advantage of economies of scale, and to ensure transparency in operations so all OGP countries are treated fairly, the IRM will not modify or rearrange any of their product deadlines to accommodate delays from countries. NAPs and Self-Assessment Reports will be considered delivered when they are uploaded to the OGP website.
  2. If a country submits their NAP or Self-Assessment Report late, the delay will be noted in the IRM report.
  3. If a country delivers its new NAP more than four months late, the IRM will document this and, working with the Support Unit, will refer the case to the Criteria and Standards Subcommittee of the OGP Steering Committee. The country will receive a letter from the Support Unit noting this occurrence. The same rules apply to the late submission of the self-assessment reports.

New Zealand has already received one letter from the OGP Support Unit by failing to meet the July deadline (known well in advance), and we can anticipate a second one.  We will then be subject to review by the OGP's Criteria and Standards subcommittee placing New Zealand at serious risk of being ejected from the OGP.

The Government must take its commitment to this agreement seriously by ensuring that we are not dropping the ball in a move that could jeopardise our participation in this critical global initiative.

TINZ is working with the SSC to try and ensure that the engagement is not only more inclusive, but effective.

This is one red card that could become a serious black mark on our hard won reputation for integrity and transparency.

Actions

Recent Activity

Corruption Perceptions Index 2016 TINZ media release
Transparency International’s 2016 Corruption Perception Index (TI CPI) has found that the New Zealand and Denmark public sectors are the least corrupt in the world. 25 Jan, 2017

TINZ OGP Submission
Transparency International New Zealand (TINZ) submitted recommendations for New Zealand’s second Open Government Partnership (OGP) National Action Plan (NAP). Among the recommendations were a call for more ambition in creating NAPs and developing channels of communication for improving engagement with citizens. 19 Aug, 2016

Safeguarding the public interest in research
1 Aug, 2016

EU and New Zealand tax transparency
1 Aug, 2016

London Summit 2016 NZ Statement Commitments Progress
31 Jul, 2016

New Zealand Country Statement Anti Corruption Summit London 2016
29 May, 2016

Shewan Inquiry Submission Media Release
TINZ has provided its submission to the Shewan Inquiry calling on the government to widen the terms of reference to protect New Zealand's reputation and future proof our laws following the release of the "Panama papers". 21 May, 2016

CPI 2015 TINZ Media Release
Corruption Free? NZ drops again. New Zealand has fallen to fourth place in the Transparency International Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI). 26 Jan, 2016