STAR-Ghana holds end of programme Convention

Accra, April 15, GNA – STAR-Ghana, a multi-donor pooled funding supported by DFID, DANIDA, EU and USAID, has since 2010 awarded grants totalling 37,200,000 dollars to over 172 organisations and institutions to enable them carry out activities that would better influence government business in the country.

The overall programme involving a five-year support to civil society organisations, 10 Parliamentary Committees, Leadership of Parliament and 21 media organisations, was to help increase the accountability and responsiveness of government, traditional authorities and private enterprises to Ghanaian citizens.

During an end of programme convention held by STAR-Ghana for various stakeholders and programme actors in Accra on Wednesday, Mr Ibrahim-Tanko Amidu, Programme Manager of STAR-Ghana, explained that the grants were given under five thematic areas made up of Health, Education, Access to Justice, Democratic Governance and Oil and Gas, where the citizenry were mobilized to engage in governance, as well as access improved delivery of public goods.

The end of programme convention provided space for joint learning between programme actors and other stakeholders around the role of civil society in promoting sustainable and inclusive national development, focusing particularly on enhancing transparent, accountable and responsive governance at all levels.

The theme for the convention was: ‘Looking Back, Looking Forward: Learning from STAR-Ghana Story’.

Mr Ibrahim-Tanko said as the current phase of the Star-Ghana programme comes to an end in April, the organisation seeks to share the results, lessons and contributions of its partners to national developments and governance, hence the convention.

He said stakeholders would, therefore, harvest and share good practices and learning on civil society sustainability and effectiveness, and provide an opportunity for surfacing and sharing learning from programme implementation as well as provide input for the closure of the programme.

Mr Akoto Ampaw, a private legal practitioner, who spoke on the topic: ‘Enhancing the effectiveness of Civil Society actions towards more accountable and transparent governance’, said civil society which had become an integral part of the Ghanaian society, played a critical role in ensuring that members of society were provided with their rights.

He urged civil society groups to develop the culture of building alliances and leveraging on each other’s strength and push and advocate around the issues of the Right to Information Bill and the Broadcasting Bill as well, to help society deal with corruption and the culture of impunity that had become so endemic in society today.

Mr Ampaw said civil society should mobilize to ensure that the excessive dominance of the Executive power was reviewed and ‘stripped down’, while parliament was strengthened to become more autonomous.

‘There should be an office of independent prosecutor, and the civil society could rally behind these issues to bring such social change’, Mr Ampaw added.

GNA


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