RTI Commission urged to quickly complete necessary Legislative Instrument

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The Right to Information (RTI) Commission has been prevailed upon to expedite action on the processes would see the passage of the needed Legislative Instrument for the full operationalization of the Right to Information law.

The Right to Information Bill was passed by the 7th Parliament of the 4th Republic on March 26, 2019, and assented to by the President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo on May 21, 2019. It was however scheduled to be implemented beginning January 2020 so that it could be captured in the 2020 budget. Since it came into force in January 2020, it has been without a Legislative Instrument as is required.

But Executive Secretary of the RTI Commission, Yaw Sarpong, says the absence of an L.I does not in any way stall the implementation of the law that had been in the pipeline for over two decades before its passage in 2019 under the Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo-led administration.

It is recalled that the Commission in February requested inputs from the public in drafting the Legislative Instrument which it will subsequently lay before Parliament.

“What the L.I is supposed to do is to make up for some of the loopholes in the law but is not supposed to redraft the law. But the law we have it but the L.I we’re working on to make sure it’s a more representative regulation”, Executive Secretary, Yaw Sarpong told Komla Adom on TV3 Midday Live.  

But the RTI coalition holds a different view. The coalition says, the absence of an L.I is one of the two major limitations that have hindered the effective implementation of the law.

“Without an LI to clarify and expand the provisions of the Act, interpretation of the law becomes a challenge, therefore, leaving the provisions of the Act at the mercy of unguided authority.

“We call on the RTI Commission to speed up the process on the LI development, as we call on all other stakeholders, including the Parliament of Ghana, to support its adoption”, the coalition said in a statement.

At an event in Accra to commission the headquarters of the RTI Commission, Information Minister, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah, commended the seven-member governing board of the commission for the work done so far since its inauguration in October 2020.

He however said there are other key areas that need to be given priority including the need to have the L.I in place.

“Continue to work with us to quickly complete the Legislative Instrument (L.I) that needs to be laid before parliament so that the necessary impetus can be given to the Act to function fully”, he said.

By P.D Wedam|3news.com|Ghana

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