PNAfrica with funding support from the National Endowment for Democracy (NED), issued subgrants to six Parliamentary Monitoring Organisation (PMO) Networks in West Africa– Liberia, Niger, Benin, Togo, Nigeria, and Côte D’Ivoire, with each network receiving a sum of Ten Thousand Dollars ($10,000). This follows the completion of the first phase of the Open Parliament Engagements and Networking in West Africa (OPEN West Africa) project which commenced in July 2021.

Social Watch Bénin, the lead organization for the PMO network in Bénin as part of the implementation of their project activities under the sub-grant issued by PNAfrica organized a workshop for members of the network on 16th February 2023.

The workshop sought to present the results of the Africa Open Parliament Index (OPI) to members and get their buy-in on the implementation of the recommendations in the OPI report as well as the implementation of the project.

A summarized version of the OPI report has been presented to the Speaker of Parliament of Benin by Social Watch Bénin and CEDEL during a courtesy call on him. The meeting sought to among other things, highlight the performance of Assemblée Nationale du Bénin in the OPI and Point out some gaps identified in the report. They also encouraged a synergy between parliament and CSOs for better results in the next release of the OPI.

On February 1st, 2023, PNA, represented by its Programs and Research Associate, handed over copies of the OPI report to their local partners implementing their subgrant in Bénin, ie Social Watch Bénin. The OPI report assesses parliaments based on the three criteria of Openness; Transparency, Civic Participation, and Public Accountability. Social Watch Bénin, lead of the Bénin Country PMO network would work hand in hand with their National Assembly to implement Open Parliament Action Plans based on the gaps identified in the report.

In Niger, our Network of PMOs led by Réseau Nigérien Anticorruption brought together parliamentarians, CSOs, and journalists to discuss transparency, accountability, and citizens participation in the work of their National Assembly. Parliamentary Network Africa is excited to be supporting this impactful move from Niamey.

The Réseau Nigérien Anti-corruption (RENAC) in collaboration with PNAfrica organized a parliamentary dialogue on the theme “FIGHTING CORRUPTION IN NIGER.” The dialogue brought together 16 members of the National Assembly, civil society players, and media professionals. Together, they spent a day discussing the concept of an open parliament in Niger, as well as the evaluation of the OPI report launched in 2022 which assessed 13 African countries: Benin, Burkina Faso, Cape Verde, Côte d’Ivoire, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea Bissau, Liberia, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone and Togo. The evaluation was based on three criteria: transparency, civic participation, and public accountability.

CACIT Togo Officiel, our partner organization in Togo, through the implementation of its sub-grant, has built the capacity of CSOs to have better working relationships with parliament. CACIT also organized a multi-stakeholder roundtable on strengthening the effectiveness of justice administration mechanisms and the fight against impunity (human rights and corruption) in Togo. The activity brought together state actors, CSOs, trade unions, and the media. It was followed by a press conference at the CACIT headquarters.

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