South Africa’s open government concept, where citizens are allowed to participate in key projects, has enhanced transparency and improved the livelihoods of all people, says Minister of Public Service and Administration Ngoako Ramatlhodi.

The government has initiated a partnership with software technology companies to resolve day-to-day challenges like the recent water challenges, he said when officiating at the Open Government Partnership (OGP) Africa Regional Conference at the Century City Conference Centre here Thursday.

“As part of our participation in the OGP, we have developed a Hack-for-Water project with partners such as Code for South Africa, the Innovation Hub, Microsoft and the Department for Water and Sanitation,” he said.

“The purpose of the OGP Hack-for-Water project is to expand the reach of its awareness and education campaigns, to encourage more responsible use of water in industry, agriculture and within communities.”

The OGP is an international voluntary effort to improve government performance, encourage civic participation and enhance government responsiveness to people. It aims to secure concrete commitments from governments to promote transparency, empower citizens, fight corruption and harness new technologies to strengthen governance.

Ramatlhodi said the Hack-for-Water project seeks to encourage communities, researchers, and entrepreneurs to propose “out-of-the-box” ideas for solving water management challenges. Entrepreneurs and ordinary South Africans have submitted innovative ideas and solutions aimed at conserving water and encouraging responsible water use.

“The …. project demonstrates the importance of open government in encouraging the use of technology in encouraging citizen participation in solving daily life challenges that face our citizens. Indeed the OGP does add value to good governance and we encourage more African countries to join the partnership,” he said.

Source:Nam News Network