Five gubernatorial candidates in Akwa Ibom state signed the Open Governor Manifesto on Sunday to publicly symbolize their willingness to pursue an open government agenda, if elected.

They include New Nigeria People’s Party candidates James Akpanudoedehe; African Democratic Congress, Arch Nya-etok; the Young Progressive Party, Senator Bassey Albert; African Action Congress, Iboro Otu; and Democratic Action Party, Ekere Essien.

The manifesto, prepared by Policy Alert, a non-governmental organization committed to good governance and environmental sustainability, was presented during the Akwa Ibom governorship debate held on Sunday at the Ibom Icon Hotel and Golf Resort, Uyo, organized by the Nigerian Journalists Union. , Akwa Ibom State Council.

Their goal was to commit gubernatorial candidates to implement the Open Government Partnership in the state, as the government baton will change hands in May 2023.

Speaking during the presentation, Policy Alert Senior Program Officer Mfon Gabriel said: “OGP is a global, multi-stakeholder initiative that brings together reformers inside and outside of government to create solutions that make government more transparent, responsible, participatory, technology-driven and inclusive.”

It added: “Nigeria signed up to OGP in 2016 and so far, 25 states have signed up to OGP, however Akwa Ibom is one of three states in the Niger Delta that has not yet signed up to the association.”

She said the Manifesto signing is part of an OpenGovTownHall series implemented by the Niger Delta Open Government Observatory, a civil society group working to strengthen OGP adoption and implementation in the region.

NOGO is supported in six Niger Delta states by USAID, the Strengthening Civic Advocacy project, and local engagement implemented by Palladium.

“The project is led by Policy Alert in partnership with the Nigerian Open Government Association Secretariat, Open Alliance, Mail Newspaper and The Rootub among others.