Right to Information Bill Mahama should show commitment to passage

"We can only hope that the president finds it important considering the fact that every sovereignty is said to lie in the hands of the people and for that matter, the government should be acting on behalf of the people."

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Executive Director for Good Governance Africa (GGA-West Africa), Tina Asante-Apeatu has urged President Mahama to ensure the passage of the Right To Information (RTI) bill into law.

President Mahama is currently in Paris where he is participating in an event organised by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) on the occasion of the International Day for Universal Access to Information.

READ ALSO:Right to Information Bill Mahama not committed to passage of legislation - Coalition

The President will be Co-Chairing the event dubbed Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) Advocacy Group of the United Nations. He will take his audience through the importance of information and media to sustainable development, with a focus on Goal 16 of the 2030 Agenda.

SDG Goal 16 aims at promoting peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, the provision of access to justice for all, and building effective, accountable institutions at all levels.

READ MORE: Right to Information bill Parliament will pass RTI bill - Speaker assures

Speaking on Accra-based Class FM Madam Asante-Apeatu stated: “We can only hope that the president finds it important considering the fact that every sovereignty is said to lie in the hands of the people and for that matter, the government should be acting on behalf of the people. ...If there is some information in the abode of the government and the people have the need and try to ask, it should be easy for the people to access the information.”

“…It should be an urgent call on him to see to the passage of the RTI bill and then to see to its implementation. We are just hoping that this is what he will do when he comes back,” she said

READ MORE: Right to Information Bill MPs divided over Clause 1 of Bill; say it will defeat its purpose

“Our president has a communication background and is also seen as a media-friendly person, so, in order not to leave the media speculating, I think it is very important for the president to see to the passage of this bill so that the media will have access to the actual information. If you leave that vacuum, they (media) will fill it with their own information. We are fortunate to have a president with a very convenient and appropriate background as a communicator and also a media-friendly person.

“As far as the constitution of Ghana through Article 21 is concerned, and for good governance practices to be ensured, the bill must be passed. It is long overdue. This would clear the various doubts in the minds of Ghanaians as to what goes into some government awarded contracts,” she added.

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