Journalists urged to help in the fight against Corruption

Accra� The Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ) on Friday urged journalists to help in the efforts towards the achievement of the tenets of the National Anti-Corruption Action Plan (NACAP) adopted in 2015.

Mr Richard Quayson, CHRAJ Deputy Commission decried the continuous normalisation of corruption in the country and said there was an urgent need for all stakeholders including Ghana News Agency as the state wire service provider to support combat the canker.

The CHRAJ Deputy Commissioner said this during a day’s forum to enlighten staffs of the Ghana News Agency on the mandate of CHRAJ, NACAP and the Code of Ethics for Public Officers.

The forum organised by the GNA, served as bi-monthly public educational platform, being created by the agency to update the skills of staffs on reportage of national issues and also serve as medium to regularly engage with strategic stakeholders.

The forum, as GNA moves to deepen its engagement with stakeholders, state institutions and civil society organisations to create the platform for effective discussion of national issues.

Mr Quayson explained that NACAP, which spans from 2015 to 2024 was to create a sustainable democratic society, founded on good governance and imbued with high ethics and integrity.

He added that there was the need to contextualise and mobilise efforts as well as resources of stakeholders to prevent and fight corruption through the promotion of high ethics and integrity as well as the vigorous enforcement of applicable laws.

He said the role of every stakeholder, which include government, individuals, civil society, private sector and the media towards the fight of the corruption menace, was critical to the maintenance of human rights of the citizenry.

Mr Quayson noted that, corruption was not beneficial to anyone, but destroyed the very fundamentals of societal strength adding that, the cost of corruption was now measured in human lives.

He urged the leadership of institutions including the Agency to create, introduce and implement workplace sexual harassment policy, transparent recruitment process; transparent procurement practices, introduce measures to control absenteeism, lateness and moonlighting as part of the general roles to curb corruption within.

Quoting George Orwell, he said: A people that elect corrupt politicians, imposters, thieves, and traitors are not victims, but accomplices.

Mr Quayson urged the staff to desist from corrupts acts that had the potential to undermine the national effort of combatting corruption.

He indicated that as an institution, established under the regime of Dr Kwame Nkrumah, Ghana’s first President, it was prudent to recall what Nkrumah said on the change of the Ghanaian mind-set.

He noted that, NACAP was developed pursuant to Article 35(8) of the 1992 Constitution on Directive Principles of State Policy, which said: The State shall take steps to eradicate corrupt practices and abuse of power.

Mr Quayson also took participants of the workshop through the Public Service Integrity Programme (PSIP), which is built on four pillars.

The four pillars according to the PSIP are: ethical leadership, individual integrity, systems integrity as well as monitoring and deterrence.

Mr Kwaku Osei Bonsu, GNA Acting General Manager, urged the staff to remain professional in the daily conduct of their duties, saying that, we cannot afford to do anything unethical.

He said the Agency was thriving on its credibility and therefore, called on staff to pay critical attention to the details delivered by CHRAJ, seeking every avenue to practice them.

Source: Ghana News Agency