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OccupyGhana: RTI Act wake-up call for corrupt officials

Pressure group, OccupyGhana has commended the president for appending his signature to the Right to Information (RTI) Act approved by Parliament on Tuesday.

“OccupyGhana is delighted at the presidential assent to Right to Information (RTI) Act on finally bringing law into force, we are impressed at the urgency with which the president gave assent to the law, an indication of importance given to legislation, following 20 years of delay by previous governments,” it said.

The group in a statement issued in Accra said approval must serve as a wake-up call for corrupt officials or citizens currently perpetrating acts of corruption against the state and hoping to go unnoticed.

“We call on such officials or citizens to desist from such corrupt activities, lest a well-placed request for information exposes your wrongdoing in the months ahead, deterrent against corruption, heralding new era of integrity and transparency and accountability law brings, we urge journalists and citizens to apprise themselves with the Act to know ways for requesting for information,” it said.

The statement said the full implementation of the Act promises to provide major milestone in the fight against corruption and public servants could use Act as an effective tool in seeking transparency and accountability of public institutions.

“There are powerful examples of ways in which similar laws in other countries have been effectively and efficiently used to check corruption, procedure for requesting for information is relatively straightforward and simple. Request needs to contain necessary particulars to enable information to be identified by information officer in public institutions.

“We call on the citizenry to identify key issues in communities, make focused and relevant requests for information should be used to take effective, efficient and fact-based action to address issues of national interest.

“Many have bemoaned Act will take time to come into force, the citizenry must be prepared for its implementation, critical for public institutions and officials be ready to take up challenge and respond transparently and timeously to requests for information, when they commence,” the statement said.

Although the Act has been approved by both the Legislature and Executive it will, however, take a period of one year to take full effect. –citinewsroom.com

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