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07 декабря, 17:53

Let Us Move Past These "Shocks". Citizens Must Organize, Governments Must Engage

And so the year begins to close with much to reflect upon. Did we expect all these "crises" we're now facing - and if not, why? What caused them? How do we engage with them now? Personally, I was surprised at the collective shock at the year's big moments - Brexit, for example, or the US presidential election. We view these events through a Northern prism. Globally, these moments I feel were just the latest in a series of events stemming from a thirty-year economic orthodoxy. In fact, many of us from the South still in the struggle for democracy and human rights have long wondered why so many in the North took so long to see the political capture in their own systems that pushed back ordinary people - until now. We must link together, globalize even, our world's similar struggles - those within rich countries, and those between the rich North and developing South. From Durban to Dallas, our economic model marches to the beat of those with extreme wealth. It has enabled 62 billionaires to accumulate as much wealth as the poorest 3.6 billion people (watch this space for our latest research come January). Decades of progress in the long fight against poverty and gender inequality are being held back. Pointing to Oxfam's statistic, President Obama was right to say that "A world in which 1% of humanity controls as much wealth as the other 99% will never be stable". This is a world in which big business and wealthy elites are now very openly writing political rules to their favour: be it lowering their own taxes, or forcing austerity, whilst expecting bailouts as we saw in the wake of the 2008 global financial crisis. Some of Oxfam's most recent research shows how the most powerful US companies collectively received $130 in tax breaks for every $1 spent on lobbying. I find the late US Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis' words here to be prophetic: "We may have democracy, or we may have wealth concentrated in the hands of the few, but we cannot have both". Faced with this, governments face a choice: either reduce inequality, or reduce democracy. Around the world they are repeatedly opting for the latter. The International Trade Union Confederation, for example, finds a 22% increase in restrictions on the rights of voice and assembly in its latest survey of 141 countries - that is developed and developing nations. Within this increasingly fraught, political and contested space, the power of people is being decimated. Citizens must dig deep to amplify their voices together. I fiercely believe that current events only heighten the importance of civic space, for citizens to be able to advocate and influence. Amidst these rising anxieties, we would be wise to learn from the triumphs by citizens around the world. These victories are happening and often do not make headlines. Take the 'Civil Society Platform on the IMF Bailout' in Ghana, of which Oxfam was a part. We won the arguments to ensure the IMF's bailout did not cut but instead increased social spending - by 30%! The Open Government Partnership (OGP) finds its unique calling in such times. In the five years since its inception, OGP has engineered ambitious and innovative ways to make governments more open, accountable and responsive to citizens. 70 countries - and counting - are signed up to OGP commitments which they can be held account to. It is a riposte to the spiralling distrust in institutions. This week's Paris OGP summit for governments and civil society leaders, billed as a "COP for democracies", is the perfect stimulus for genuine discussion - one that must not tinker at the margins but honestly seek to address the causes of inequality. Its legacy must prosper well after Paris. Fundamental is the need for governments to protect the space for citizens to claim their rights, organize and express themselves. The people standing up most strongly for our democracies should be celebrated not prosecuted - be it those countless human rights defenders who defend all our rights, or the brave whistle-blowers who expose tax dodging. Vested interests thrive in the shadows. Citizens need to know how their countries are being run so that they can hold governments and big business to account. The government of Kenya, like Tanzania, recently passed its Access to Information Bill. This marks progress; it is a commitment from Kenya's OGP 'National Action Plan' fulfilled. Yet it is ever more apparent to me that by themselves, civic space and transparency are not enough. They do not fight inequality; people do. And so the process of public policy itself requires recalibrating - putting people at their centre - to deliver better policies, continually improve services, and build trust. Governments, steered by their commitment to OGP, must reimagine the way in which they foster citizen participation in decision-making. It is essential that they engage more meaningfully with the voices of marginalized and least represented people, for example women who are unable to participate in policy consultations because they do most of the unpaid care work. OGP has proven that better engagement pays off: the more civil society is involved, the likelier that policy commitments will be ambitious and delivered. In Costa Rica, civil society leveraged OGP to secure government commitments on institutionalizing consultations for any activity affecting indigenous populations. Today, 20 government agencies are engaged in this same mechanism. I am particularly eager for governments to also lock-in policies that respond to the real needs of citizens. Some examples of "feedback loops" exist already: a citizen complaints portal in Bojonegoro in Indonesia - an OGP pioneer at subnational-level - that insists governments must respond to citizens within five days, to "Check My School" in the Philippines where parents provide real-time feedback on whether teachers and textbooks show up. "Check My Services" in Mongolia sees citizens score over 84 public services - that affect over 45,000 citizens- from universities and hospitals to street-lights and waste disposal. These exciting initiatives shift power to people. Change is necessarily complex and, even at best, drawn out. But in many ways, inch by inch, policy by policy, the work of OGP - and the movement for open, responsive, accountable governments - distils democracies to what they should be. Let us continue to rewrite the rules so they work for all of us, not an elite few. -- This post is part of a series produced by The Huffington Post and the Open Government Partnership, on the occasion of the 2016 OGP Global Summit in Paris . The Open Government Partnership is an international coalition of over 70 governments and thousands of civil society organizations working on open government initiatives. This series aims to highlight some key issues. For more information about OGP, visit http://www.opengovpartnership.org, #OGP16 Follow Winnie Byanyima at: LinkedIn, Twitter Photo: Citizens of Kalambaogo, a town north of Burkina Faso's capital of Ouagadougou. Credit: Andy Hall / Oxfam -- This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.

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07 декабря, 16:37

В Гане священник мануально увеличивает мужское достоинство и женскую грудь

Священник из Ганы Дэниел Обиним утверждает, что способен прикосновениями увеличивать мужские гениталии и женскую грудь. К основателю "Международной церкви божьего пути" выстраиваются очереди из желающих улучшить свою внешность с помощью "прикосновения духа".

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07 декабря, 16:00

Voting begins in Ghana elections

Long lines form at voting stations across Ghana on Wednesday (December 7) as President John Mahama runs for a second term, with opposition leader Nana Akufo-Addo his closest challenger. Subscribe: http://smarturl.it/reuterssubscribe More updates and breaking news: http://smarturl.it/BreakingNews Reuters tells the world's stories like no one else. As the largest international multimedia news provider, Reuters provides coverage around the globe and across topics including business, financial, national, and international news. For over 160 years, Reuters has maintained its reputation for speed, accuracy, and impact while providing exclusives, incisive commentary and forward-looking analysis. http://reuters.com/ https://www.facebook.com/Reuters https://plus.google.com/u/0/s/reuters https://twitter.com/Reuters

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07 декабря, 14:40

Queues before dawn as Ghanaians vote in presidential election

Close race expected between incumbent John Dramani Mahama and challenger Nana Akufo-Addo Ghanaians began lining up at polling stations before dawn on Wednesday to elect their next president as the west African nation hopes to reaffirm its reputation as a model of democracy on the continent.Despite concerns about the credibility of the elections, voter enthusiasm has been high. The race is expected to be tight between the incumbent president, John Dramani Mahama, and the opposition leader, Nana Akufo-Addo. Continue reading...

07 декабря, 12:17

Кого в «Игре Престолов» играл Питер Вон?

Английский актёр Питер Вон скончался на 94-м году жизни.

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07 декабря, 11:18

Ghana goes to the polls in closely fought election

The race is tight with President John Mahama and his rival Nana Akufo Addo running neck and neck in opinion polls.

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07 декабря, 10:58

Ghana president, longtime opposition leader face off in vote

Voters in Ghana are choosing Wednesday between their incumbent leader and a three-time opposition presidential candidate amid widespread concerns about the credibility of the country’s electoral commission.

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07 декабря, 09:26

Ghana elections: Polls open with tight race predicted

Voting starts in Ghana's presidential elections, after candidates made a peace pledge.

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07 декабря, 07:54

Tight presidential race in Ghana

Fifteen million Ghanians will be voting on Wednesday for both parliamentary and presidential elections. The race is tight between president John Mahama and opposition candidate Nana Akufo Addo.

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07 декабря, 07:41

АНОНС: Президентские выборы пройдут в Гане

Президентские выборы пройдут сегодня в Гане. Всего на пост главы этой страны, расположенной в Западной Африке, претендуют три кандидата, но основными местные политические наблюдатели единогласно называют действующего 58-летнего президента республики Джона Драмани Махаму и лидера Новой патриотической партии (НПП) 72-летнего Нану Акуфо-Аддо. Подробнее читайте на нашем сайте www.oilru.com

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07 декабря, 03:39

Ghana: Police tightens security ahead of election

Security has been increased ahead of Ghana’s presidential election on Wednesday. The polls are expected to be a close race between President John Mahama and the opposition leader Nana Akufo-Addo.

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07 декабря, 03:38

В Гане сегодня состоятся выборы главы государства

В Гане сегодня состоятся выборы главы государства

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07 декабря, 03:36

В Гане сегодня состоятся выборы главы государства

В Гане сегодня состоятся выборы главы государства

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07 декабря, 03:36

В Гане сегодня состоятся выборы главы государства

В Гане сегодня состоятся выборы главы государства

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06 декабря, 23:27

Ghana Presidential Vote Hinges on Economic Perceptions

President John Mahama is emphasizing infrastructure projects ahead of the Wednesday vote. His opponent, Nana Akufo-Addo, says he can kick-start the economy.

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06 декабря, 22:04

Ghana: Police tightens security ahead of election Capture

Security has been increased ahead of Ghana’s presidential election on Wednesday. The polls are expected to be a close race between President John Mahama and the opposition leader Nana Akufo-Addo. In a country known for peaceful elections, this year been particularly heated with outbreaks of violence between opposing sides. Al Jazeera's Nicolas Haque reports from Accra. Subscribe to our channel http://bit.ly/AJSubscribe Follow us on Twitter https://twitter.com/AJEnglish Find us on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/aljazeera Check our website: http://www.aljazeera.com/

06 декабря, 20:17

Еврокомиссар призвал ЕС ускорить украинский безвиз

Ган призывает ЕС найти решение для предоставления Украине и Грузии безвизового режима

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06 декабря, 16:10

«Зенит» хочет приобрести игрока из Узбекистана

Петербургский «Зенит» в январе 2017 года может усилить свой состав узбекским полузащитником Азизом Ганиевым. Представители «сине-бело-голубых» уже вступили в официальные переговоры с клубом «Насафа» по поводу трансфера 19-летнего хавбека, сообщает Tribuna.uz. По информации источника, селекционеры петербургского клуба обратили внимание на игрока во время молодёжного чемпионата Азии, где Ганиев выступал в составе сборной Узбекистана. Ранее сообщалось, что «Зенит» проявляет интерес к голкиперу «Анжи» Александру Беленову, полузащитнику турецкого «Коньяспора» Омеру Али Шахинеру и защитнику бразильского «Сан-Паулу» Родриго Кайо.

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06 декабря, 15:53

Аналитический обзор основных валютных пар по методам Уильяма Ганна 06 12 2016

Перспективы движения основных валютных пар с точки зрения классического технического анализа. Альтернативный взгляд с помощью методов Уильяма Ганна: «Квадрат девяти» и «Углы Ганна».

06 декабря, 15:28

На просмотр в "Зенит" приедет молодой полузащитник из Узбекистана Ганиев

В ближайшее время на просмотр в петербургский "Зенит" приедет 18-летний узбекский полузащитник каршинского "Насафа" Азизжон Ганиев, сообщает sports.uz. Если всё пройдёт успешно, то Ганиев подпишет контракт и с нового сезона может продолжить свою карьеру в составе сине-бело-голубых.Селекционеры российского клуба обратили внимание на игрока сборной Узбекистана во время молодёжного чемпионата Азии для игроков не старше 19 лет, который недавно завершился в Бахрейне. Узбекистан на турнире дошёл до четвертьфинала, где проиграл Ирану. Ганиев принял участие в трёх полных матчах. По информации источника издания, "Зенит" уже провёл переговоры с Ганиевым и достиг устной договорённости. Во взрослом футболе Азиз Ганиев дебютировал в 16 лет, приняв участие в двух матчах чемпионата и Кубка Узбекистана в 2014 году. В текущем сезоне полузащитник провёл 17 матчей за "Насаф" в чемпионате Узбекистана, не забил ни одного мяча, но получил три жёлтые карточки.