08.05.2005 General News

Ghanaians urged to ensure accountability

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Cape Coast, May 8, GNA-Participants at a days forum to discuss conditions for social accountability in Ghana at the weekend agreed that there should be well laid down structures that would compel public officials, especially those on top of the ladder to periodically render accounts of their stewardship to the people.

They said this would help keep officials in check, remind them of the need to be accountable within a certain time frame and would also be held accountable if they failed to live up to expectation.

The forum organised by the Ghana Centre for Democratic Development (CDD) in collaboration with the World Bank, in Cape Coast on Saturday, forms part of an on-going diagnostic study being conducted on social accountability in Ghana.

It seeks to examine the current enabling environment for citizens to demand social accountability from government as well as contribute to proposals aimed at improving conditions for social accountability in the country.

District and Municipal Chief Executives, Presiding Members of Assemblies, Community Based Organisations, traditional authorities, development partners and media representatives among other groups from the Central Region attended the forum.

The participants expressed regret that, currently, most public officials, politicians as well as Church leaders among others failed to render proper accounts of their stewardship.

This is because there might not be laid down mechanisms that demand accountability from officials and even when they existed the citizens did not request for compliance.

The participants also noted that the tendency for corruption breeding in such situations was very high and, therefore, advocated that all bodies at all levels including the local and traditional, should endeavour to establish structures to assist in making officials accountable.

They urged Ghanaians to develop interest in the activities of government and all officials and demand social accountability from them. Professor Emmanuel Gyimah Boadi, Executive Secretary of CDD, advised that people should consider social accountability as their right and request it from public officials.

He said social accountability when well rendered could enhance good governance and promote the growth of the country's infant democracy. 8 May 05

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