HIMALAYAN NEWS SERVICE
KATHMANDU: The common people to whom the aid is targeted can share their views of the projects funded by the World Bank in their locality through social network sites like Facebook soon, as the multilateral donor has started opening up its information system regarding projects, data and finances.
“The World Bank has started to open up itself for the public some two years ago under its Access to Information policy,” said External Operational Communications of the World Bank Sumir Lal. At a time, when the effectiveness of foreign aid has been questioned from various quarters of both the recipient and donors, the World Bank has come up with aid transparency for more accountability through people’s participation called Open Development approach.
The Open Development initiative is an open data and knowledge, open operations and tools and open solutions, the World Bank said, adding that it is committed to providing accessibility, easy-to-use data, and unprecedented information and documents to the public. “Broad access to the data will allow citizens, Community Social Organisations (CSOs), policy makers, advocacy groups and other stakeholders to make better-informed decisions and to measure the improvements more accurately.”
Access to Information policy represents a fundamental shift in the bank’s approach to making information publicly available, Lal said, adding that the policy recognises the centrality of transparency and accountability to the development process and includes principled commitments to strengthen public ownership and oversight of the World Bank-financed operations.
Nepal has been receiving foreign aid since 1950 for development activities but it has not been able to make justice for overall development.
Aid could not be streamlined — due to lack of transparency — with national priorities further increasing dependency of the country rather than making the country independent over
the last half century. In such a case, transparency will ensure both the donor and recipient to know whether the aid money has been making
any impact or not.