Mustapha Hameed flanked by his Deputies
As part of measures to bring governance to the doorsteps of the citizens, the government of Ghana through the Ministry of Information has decided to translate key government policies and programs into local languages.
Since the West African country has lots of local languages, the government in consultation with linguistic experts have chosen six major languages that cut across the country for the project. They are, Ga, Akan, Ewe, Hausa, Dagbani and Nzema.
This was disclosed by the Minister of Information, Mustapha Hameed when he recently engaged journalists after a three-day retreat of the Ministry in Ho, the Volta regional capital.
The interaction which was the first since this government (New Patriotic Party) took power was to brief the press on the vision, mission and activities of the Ministry in the short to medium term.
He indicated that experts in the six languages have already been assembled and will soon start work to ensure that majority of Ghanaians understand government policies and programs as well as contribute meaningfully to it.
He said some of the immediate translations to be done will be the President’s State of the Nation Address and the Key Highlights of the Budget Statements among others. He was optimistic that this initiative will go a long way to bridge the gap between government and the citizenry and also facilitate cooperation between the two parties.
Mr. Hameed went on to outline certain major programs of the ministry as part of its strategy to bring governance to the doorstep of the populace and also attract the needed feedback from the populace.
These include the rejuvenation of the ‘Meet the Press’ series where various Ministries and Agencies brief the press on the programs and policies. Second, is a concept called “The Policy Summit”, which will bring stakeholders together to look at critical areas of national development.
He said plans were far advanced to roll out the first Police Summit on the first and Second of May, 2017. The maiden edition which will focus on Energy, Agriculture and Infrastructure for poverty eradication will have the stakeholders evaluate government’s policies and programs in those areas, critique them and make suggestions in improving them.
The Ministry hopes to hold 216 town hall meetings in all the 216 districts in the country yearly, to bring government appointees and heads of departments and agencies to interact with the citizens.
There will also be “Ask a Minister” that will also bring Ministers face to face with the citizens to explain and update them on issues in their Ministries and also answer questions from the citizens face to face and through other new media forms like, call ins, text messages, social media among others.
The defunct government magazine, “Ghana Today” which has not seen any publication in the last ten years has also been revived and it is likely to hit the stands in a week, the Minster announced. He said as a result of the production cost, the magazine will be sold like all other magazines, like Africa Watch, Ovation among others.
Mustapha Hameed who was flanked by his three Deputies and Deputy Director of Communications at the Presidency noted that these initiatives are just a few of the strategies put in place to deliver “accurate and prompt information to the citizens.”
From Fred Duodu, Ho ([email protected])