GJA commends govt for laying RTI bill in Parliament

The Ghana Journalists Association (GJA) has commended the government for laying the Right to Information Bill, 2018 in Parliament last Friday for consideration.

 

“The GJA highly commends President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo for walking his talk by taking the initial step to get the bill passed in line with his pledge in his 61st Independence anniversary address that, he would work to get the RTI Bill passed “before the end of this Meeting of Parliament,” a statement by GJA said.

 

Signed and issued by Roland Affail Monney, President of GJA, yesterday in Accra, the statement noted that it was refreshing that after months of campaigning by civil society organisations (CSOs) in particular for the re-laying and passage of the RTI Bill, the Executive has responded by sending the bill back to Parliament.

 

It further commended the CSOs for their persistence, and not relenting in their commitment to carry out the campaign for the law to be passed in the interest of the constitutional right of Ghanaians to know.

 

The statement recalled the torturous journey the RTI Bill has made in and out of Parliament since it was first laid in the House about two decades ago. Unfortunately, and rather sadly, the bill was never passed.

 

It urged Parliament to pass the bill into law immediately for Ghana to join about 22 other African countries with an operational and practicable Right to Information law.

 

The GJA recalled the role CSOs have played in championing the passage of the RTI Bill, especially the Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA) for being the originator of the bill and the RTI Coalition and other organisations that engaged in sustained campaign to get the bill passed and urged other groups to join the GJA in a relentless campaign until it was passed.

 

The statement also called on government to consider passing the Broadcast Bill which has also suffered similar fate as the RTI Bill for many years.

“We believe these two bills, when passed into law, will enhance transparency and accountability, as well as deepen the country’s fledgling democracy,” the statement added.

 

 

                                  

 

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