Dormaa-Ahenkro (B/A), Sept. 2, GNA – STAR-Ghana, a multi-donor pooled organisation, on Tuesday inaugurated a media network in the Brong-Ahafo Region to help track and monitor revenue inflows and outflows at the municipal and district assemblies in the region.
The seven-member Media Accountability Network on Local Governance, chaired by Mr Dennis Peprah, Senior Reporter at Ghana News Agency, is to work to ensure that internally generated and other funds of the assemblies are utilised judiciously to facilitate development.
It would also serve as an effective link between tax payers and the assemblies, to help facilitate accountability, as well as effective decision-making processes at the local level.
The establishment of the network is in line with a project, being implemented by Gift FM, a local radio station at Dormaa-Ahenkro and Global Media Foundation (GLOMEF), a human rights and media advocacy non-governmental organisation in the Dormaa Central Municipality.
Mrs Lamisi Dabire, Media Officer at STAR-Ghana who inaugurated the network at Dormaa-Ahenkro, asked members to discharge their duties responsively to achieve their set goals.
She expressed optimism that the collaboration between STAR-Ghana and the project implementers would be sustained and enhanced to deepen local governance and strengthen transparency and accountability at the local level.
Mr Leonard Amengo, a journalist, in a keynote address, called on media organisations and journalists to see themselves as partners in development.
He noted that the assemblies would appreciate the work of the media and the network in particular, if practitioners execute their work devoid of partisan considerations.
Mr Amengo said they should step up education on the district assembly concept to empower citizens to make meaningful contributions towards development, especially, at the local levels.
Mr Raphael Godlove Ahenu, Chief Executive Officer of GLOMEF, said according to the Local Government Act, district assemblies ought to be more responsive and accountable to the people.
He said a strong working relationship between the network, the media and the assemblies would facilitate speedy development of the region.
Mr Ahenu noted that a survey conducted by GLOMEF indicated that tax payers in the area were reluctant in paying their taxes, because most of them, they did not know how their monies were being used.
He asked the network not to use the platform to achieve their parochial interests, but rather allowed national interest to supersede their personal aspirations in the course of their duties.
Mr Victor Fosu Boamah, Operations Director of GLOMEF, said the three- year project being implemented in 15 communities in the municipality, was aimed at promoting revenue mobilisation through tax education and ensuring transparency and accountability at the assembly level.
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