Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara, has urged government functionaries to be open in the role they play in governance of the country.
At the opening ceremony of the National Assembly Open Week in Abuja yesterday, he argued that openness by the three arms of government is crucial to ensuring good governance.
Dogara, who expressed concern over the misunderstanding of the functions of the parliament in carrying out its constitutionally assigned roles and responsibilities, said he was hopeful that the event would enlighten Nigerians more on the workings of parliaments and other related activities.
He reaffirmed the resolve of the National Assembly to uphold the principle of openness as contained in the declaration of parliamentary openness at the World e-parliament Conference in 2012.
The speaker said the House was demonstrating commitment to openness in parliamentary activities by facilitating its practice, continuity and progressive improvement. He called on other arms of government to imbibe the same practice.
“It is in pursuit of this that the National Assembly passed the Freedom of Information Act and other related legislations designed to ensure better citizen access to governmental information. The National Assembly has also opened its budget to the public within the ambit allowed by the appropriation laws and process.
“I call on other arms of government, particularly the executive, to open its doors and activities to legislative scrutiny. Contrary to some mischief makers’ views, legislative oversight and scrutiny is very critical to good governance as the legislature remains perhaps the only arm of government imbued with necessary constitutional powers to obtain information necessary to shine light on any form of abuse, inefficiencies or waste in governance.”