RTI Bill is not a foreign concept

Right to Information
Right to Information

The Right to Information (RTI) Bill is not a foreign concept, but a constitutional requirement, Madam Esther Ahulu, Administrative Assistant of the Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative (CHRI) an international non-governmental organisation has said.

Right to Information
Right to Information

She explained that Article 21 (1) (f) of the 1992 Constitution permitted citizens to easily access information subject to guidelines and laws.

The RTI Bill, Madam Ahulu said, was also supported by other international conventions that Ghana was signatory to and advised Ghanaians to support its passage.

She was speaking at a capacity building workshop on the RTI bill organised by the Brong-Ahafo Network of Non-Governmental Organisations (BANGO) with support from the CHRI.

The workshop was aimed at sensitising participants on the content and current state of the bill.

Madam Ahulu said the bill had a number of benefits to the public, politicians and other public office holders and advised all and sundry to support its passage.

She explained that the RTI bill was not a target of specific public officials, saying it was not true that its passage would empower the general public to access all forms information.

She said free information flow would reduce unnecessary public speculations, and perceived corrupt practices in some public institutions.

Madam Ahulu noted that when passed, the bill would encourage people to seek information on revenue inflows and outflows at the assemblies.

Madam Mina Mensah, Coordinator of the CHRI, noted that many Ghanaians were not aware of the content of the bill because it was not easily accessible.

She observed that several provisions in the bill ought to be reviewed if the country desired to achieve maximum benefit.

Mrs Agnes Kusi, Sunyani West District Chief Executive, noted that public education on the RTI bill was very low in rural areas.

She stressed the need to create a platform and open up public discussions on the content of the draft bill in the interest of the nation.

Mrs Kusi advised the media to take the responsibility to educate citizens on certain policies and programmes that would benefit the entire nation.

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