The NGO Coordination Committee for Iraq (NCCI) and the United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS), in association with the Civil Society Committee of the Council of Representatives and the NGOs Directorate in the Secretariat of the Council of Ministers, held a Press Conference to Launch the 'Charter of Cooperation between Public Authorities and Non-Governmental Organizations'.
The event was attended by 7 Iraqi Members of Parliament, the Higher Commission of Human Rights, the Baghdad Provincial Council, a Political Adviser of the European Union delegation to Iraq, 80 representatives of different Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs), and 20 different media establishments.
The Charter is a proposed policy document to encourage cooperation between the Iraqi government and civil society in working for political, economic, and social development in Iraq. The Charter’s provisions will create specific and measurable obligations for government, parliament, and civil society, and will contribute to a more effective and coordinated partnerships between the sectors. The Charter was drafted by a committee including twelve members of parliament, five government officials, and five civil society leaders, and has been discussed and refined through more than fifty consultation meetings with more than 2,000 civil society representatives across all eighteen Iraqi governorates.
Jawad al Jubouri, Head of the Civil Society Committee in Parliament stated that: This charter reflects the hard work of civil society willing and there is good response from the political sides to adopt the charter and facilitate the related matters. After preparing stages have been completed, we proposed the charter to the executive authorities as the members of drafting committee are from the legislative authority; the charter has been proposed to the vise president of the Republic and there is flexibility in supporting the charter to be active part in the government policy.
While Mr. Charles Stewart, Political Adviser in the EU stated that: The European Union role in supporting the initiatives to improve the relations between the authorities and civil society , as in the Estonia experience where the members of drafting committee traveled to learn of positive points in this experience.
Mr. Sa'don Dammed, the head of Madarik establishment praised the efforts of NGOs through the last ten years which moved from relief work only to advocacy field; the charter is a result of the mobilization that leads to the public benefit in order to achieve the real partnership between the civil societies and political directs.
From his side Mr. Hashim Al Assaf the executive coordinator in NCCI stated that: there are 1985 persons have participated in consultancy about charter and most of them were optimistic as their input will take in consideration and reflect in the final drafting of charter by their representatives in the drafting committee and this charter will contribute in Non-governmental Organizations' improvement.