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Ghanaians lack courage to fight malfeasance – NCCE official

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Mr Pontius Pilate Baba Apaabey, Deputy Volta Regional Director of the National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE), has expressed the need for Ghanaians to garner the courage to consistently insist on seeing the right thing done.

He observed that a number of Ghanaians were apathetic to governance issues, especially at the local level, and would rather accept to condone with illegality than confront it.

Mr Apaabey, made this known in a paper he delivered on “Local Participation and Social Auditing for Good Governance” at a Transparency and Accountability Workshop in Kpando in the Kpando Municipality of the Volta Region on Monday.

The Workshop was organised by the NCCE in is collaboration with Ghana Integrity Initiative (GII) to boost participation of the citizenry in ensuring transparency, accountability and good governance.

Mr Apaabey listed executive dominance at all levels of government, low participation of women in local governance, slow pace of fiscal decentralisation, lack of open and transparent local governance as some of the challenges to local governance and citizen’s participation.

He noted that information flow from government to its citizens and vice-versa was not fluid enough.

Mr Apaabey said some of the factors limiting effective participation of citizens in governance include low level of citizens’ understanding of mechanisms, blurred responsibilities at the levels of local governance and overdependence on central government for project initiation and implementation.

He expressed the need active social auditing mechanism to press for credible performance from duty bearers.

Mr Apaabey defined social auditing as the assessment of the “performance of public policies, programmes and projects in order to influence the process, outcomes and impacts of these instruments against the corresponding budgetary allocation for their implementation”.

Mrs Linda Ofori-Kwafo, Programmes Manager of GII, in a presentation on corruption, expressed regret that the canker was getting deeper into the body-politic despite the existence of laws to check it.

She blamed the situation on political rhetoric not backed by political will, which had witnessed only slogans without action.

Mrs Ofori-Kwafo said corruption was likely to increase when people who engaged in it went unpunished.

She observed that all manner of surveys kept rating Ghana a low performer in checking the canker.

Mr Jerry Dodou, Acting Municipal Director of NCCE said “after almost half a century of Ghana’s independence, one can say that we are still groping in the dark due to years of corruption and bad governance”.

He said there was the irony of people raising concern about corruption at high places whilst they were deeply involved in petty corruption.

Traditional authorities, the clergy, security officers, public servants, non-governmental organisations, youth groups and local government workers attended the workshop at the end of which Social Auditing Clubs were formed.

Source: GNA

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