President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has given the strongest indication yet of his eagerness to get the Right to Information (RTI) Bill passed into law.
He said that would increase transparency and add another critical weapon to the armoury in the fight against corruption.
“After many years of hesitation, we intend to bring the Bill again to Parliament to get it passed into law before Parliament rises.”
President Akufo-Addo was addressing a colourful parade of the security services and school children laced with spectacular military displays at the Independence Square to mark Ghana’s 61 years of nationhood.
Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari was on hand to provide added importance to the event held under the theme “Ghana beyond aid”.
Vice President Alhaji Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, Chief Justice Sophia Akuffo, two former Presidents – Jerry John Rawlings and John Agyekum Kufuor, the First Lady, Mrs. Rebecca Akufo-Addo and the Second Lady, Mrs. Samira Bawumia, were among the tall list of high profile personalities present.
Also there were Ministers of State, Members of Parliament (MPs), Members of the Diplomatic Community, political party leaders, religious and traditional rulers.
President Akufo-Addo said corruption – theft of public funds tended to hold back the development of the nation.
He added that it was not a partisan matter and that was why all should act together to protect the public purse and said doing this was a social common good.
“It is in all our interest that corruption does not thrive, and we police each other’s behaviour.”
He reminded everybody that “Going beyond aid” meant that they should not serve as fronts for foreign companies to defraud the nation.
That also required that they paid their and helped to take care of government property as though it were their own.
President Akufo-Addo encouraged all to refuse to be defined by the mistakes of the past, saying “even though underachievement may have been a major part of our history thus far, it should no longer be part of our destiny”.
“The only nation we are destined to become is the one we choose and decide to be. We must define and craft our destiny.”