Parliamentary openness and governance reform, the last shot to gain people’s trust in Lebanon

Maryline ZGHEIB

Résumé

Lebanon’s history along with its pluri-confessional nature explain the difficulties in carrying out reforms in the country. A culture of secrecy and a lack of political will have created a breeding ground for corruption in the Land of the Cedars. Long disillusioned and disinterested in the country’s politics, Lebanese citizens have contributed themselves by their passivity to the worsening of the country’s economic, political and social situation.

Exacerbated today by the accumulation of scandals and supported by a new generation, Lebanese citizens took to the streets for the first time in more than 15 years and demanded accountability for political and economic management. In solidarity, the Lebanese people demanded the right to a sincere, transparent, non-corrupt, accountable and responsive government.

The current situation – a mixture of political, economic and health crises – has created or reinforced the “need for statehood” among Lebanese citizens. This need concentrates the expectations of a new form of government, a moral government capable of truly protecting citizens and guaranteeing their welfare. The Lebanese demand a responsible state capable of assuming and fully performing its functions. The establishment of a new governance; one that is more transparent, participatory and collaborative, is more than needed today.

The Open Government Partnership (OGP) is one of the means to re-establish relations, facilitate the modernization of the state and enable Lebanon to benefit from greater openness. Joining the OGP will promote transparency and collaboration within Lebanese public administrations and will lead to a deepening of democratic life.

To better understand Lebanon’s interest in joining the OGP, it is necessary to review the main requirements of the OGP, starting with transparency. We will first examine the level of transparency existing in Lebanon (§ 1) and then move on to the importance of developing a policy of openness (§ 2).

Mots-clés

Lebanon, parliament, open government

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