Credible RTI law now or never – Media Coalition to lawmakers

Pressure group, Media Coalition on RTI has launched an ambitious project to rally Ghanaians to pressurise their lawmakers to pass the Right to Information Bill.

Advocating a credible information law, the Coalition’s Interim Team led by the Editor of The Finder newspaper, Elvis Darko has taken the fight to the doorstep of the Members of Parliament (MPs).

The Coalition in a statement Wednesday said it would take notes and publish same of the lawmakers who attend sitting to deliberate on the RTI Bill currently before them.

But the campaign to get the MPs to pass the Bill that has been in and out of Ghana’s Parliament for more than a decade has faced some stiff opposition.

Adansi Asokwa MP, Kobina Tahir Hammond has declared his dislike for the Bill and has gained notoriety for stampeding efforts to get it passed.

Adansi Asokwa MP, Kobina Tahir Hammond opposes RTI bill

Defending his stance in an interview with an Accra-based station, the veteran lawmaker said an RTI law would strip government of its secret privilege.

“You need peace of mind to run a government. You need to concentrate and if you have a bill and before the ink dries on it, somebody is asking you to ‘bring this document’…to the extent that we are talking about communication between the president, the vice president and cabinet, potentially, there will be no secret in government,” he said.

A sitting to deliberate on the Bill came to an abrupt end after Mr Hammond raised issues about quorum in the House.

But the Coalition has put in place a mechanism to ensure that quorum does not become an issue going forward.

“Beginning tomorrow 1 November 2018…[we] will take notes of the names of all MPs present in Chamber whenever the RTI Bill is called for Consideration,” the group’s statement read.

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