Mr Godfred Yeboah Dame, Attorney General and Minister of Justice, has appealed to implementing partners in the USAID-funded Justice Sector Support Activity Project (JSSP) to improve internet connectivity.
He said the electronic Case Tracking System (CTS), a project under the JSSA, could only be efficient when it was easily accessed online.
Mr Dame speaking in a meeting with JSSA implementing partners said “a major handicap is the unreliable internet supply.”
He said the System was actually a very important institution that would ensure collaboration between the major stakeholders of the justice delivery chain such as the Attorney General’s office, the Judiciary, the Prisons Service and the others.
“Even in my office, it is quite difficult to access information on the CTS, and that hampers the implementation of the Case Tracking System because it is internet-based. It makes it difficult to fast-track prosecution of cases,” he lamented.
The AG appreciated the fact that the JSSA was giving attention to the role of Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) in adjudicating disputes without resorting to long court processes.
He urged disputing parties to resort to the use of ADR which would help relieve the courts of the load of cases to deal with serious ones, while promoting reconciliation.
Mrs. Yvonne Attakora Obuobisa, Director of Public Prosecution, assured the team that the AG would collaborate with them to ensure effective justice delivery in the country.
She emphasized the AG office’s willingness to share information on CTS with partners as far as it would lead to the speedy adjudication of criminal cases.
Ghana’s criminal justice delivery faces many challenges as cases are not handled promptly, and a lack of communication within the justice sector weakens efficiency during criminal prosecutions.
To improve information sharing and coordination in the country’s Justice delivery system, an electronic case tracking system was launched in Accra in October 2020.
The CTS project was rolled out in partnership with Crime Check Foundation, Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative, and other CSOs and is expected to be implemented in 40 districts in seven regions: Western, Greater Accra, Northern, Bono, Upper East, Ashanti, and Volta.
The project will progressively scrutinize the criminal justice space positively through the development of a comprehensive design and sustainable roll-out process for the integrated case tracking system and implement a testing phase and identifying the requirements for the sustainable use and expansion of the integrated case tracking system.
It will also improve procedures and policies to strengthen change management, coordination and communication across key justice sector institutions.
In 2018, the government, with support from the United States of America, launched the first integrated CTS in collaboration with the Judicial Service, the Ministry of Justice and Attorney General’s Department, the Legal Aid Commission, the Economic and Organized Crime Office, the Ghana Police Service and the Ghana Prisons Service.
Ghana’s CTS promotes inter-agency collaboration and information-sharing by developing an integrated case tracking system to support the government in effectively investigating and prosecuting criminal cases.
The activity supports civil society organizations to work closely with justice sector institutions and the CTS to determine the need for changes in policies, procedures, and legislation that would facilitate improvements in justice delivery while educating citizens about the CTS and its utility, how cases are tracked, reported, and how CTS allows for transparency in the management of criminal cases.