01.06.2005 General News

African leaders urged to look ahead

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Accra, June 1, GNA - The Deputy Minister for Foreign Affairs, Mr Akwasi Osei-Adjei has called on African and other Third World governments to develop the capacity to scan ahead, detect trends and think creatively about ways of shaping policies and institutions to respond to new challenges in today's globalised world.

Addressing the Ministerial Round Table on Innovation at the Sixth Global Forum on Re-inventing Government in Seoul, Korea on May 25, Mr Osei-Adjei observed that addressing issues that respected no organisational boundaries in an effective cross governmental way was probably the most shared concern of governments today.

A statement from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said he called for the development of a balanced strategic view of the public interest and the casting of short-term projects in a longer-term perspective in the context of budget realities and the views of civil society and individual citizens.

With specific reference to Ghana, the Deputy Minister for Foreign Affairs said efforts were being made by President John Kufuor to innovate government and encourage participatory governance.

Mr Osei-Adjei cited in particular the consolidation of the independence of the Electoral Commission, the subjection of public office holders to thorough scrutiny by Parliament and civil society, the encouragement of press freedom, and introduction into Ghana's governance of the concept of self-policing by way of the creation of an Office of Accountability within the Office of the President, and the existence of an independent Commission for Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ) and a Serious Fraud Office (SFO) with a mandate to check graft in both public and private institutions.

He also underscored the importance of Ghana's achievements in the area of decentralisation and government's introduction of the novel concept of the "People's Assembly" to the effort to enhance openness in the affairs of State and promote popular participation in governance. Ghana's early subscription to the African Peer Review Mechanism and her recent voluntary submission to scrutiny under the mechanism were also cited as evidence of her commitment to good governance at the national, sub-regional and regional levels.

The Sixth Global Forum on Reinventing Government was held in Seoul, Korea from May 24 to May 27. The government of Korea and the United Nations Organisation jointly organised it and was on the theme: "Toward Participatory and Transparent Governance."

The Forum provided a platform for countries to share their experiences in government reinvention and to seek a framework and strategy for future innovations in governance.

It is also aimed at promoting cooperation among governments, the private sector and civil society for the improvement of the quality of governance at national and local levels.

The Ghana delegation headed by the Deputy Minister, included Mr S.K. Dadey, Supervising Director for Policy Planning and Research, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Mr John Bosco Deri, First Secretary, Embassy of Ghana, Seoul, Korea.

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