The Majority Leader in Parliament Osei Kyei Mensah-Bonsu, has appealed to civil society organisations not to pressure Parliament to pass the Right to Information (RTI) Bill.
The Majority Leader made this appeal in an interview with a section of the Parliamentary Press Corps immediately after the House adjourned proceedings Tuesday following a three-month recess.
“We know what we must do. We are not responding to public pressure. The people of this country have sent us here to do a good job for them That is what we are going to do.” the Majority Leader told the press.
“MPs will do what is expected of them with all due diligence”, he said, and the public should be assured that the RTI Bill will be dealt with by the close of this session.
Asked whether the House intends to finish working on the draft bill by November 15, the Majority Leader said. “I believe so. And if we are unable to do it by then, once the budget is presented, we will debate the principles and go into session to consider the various allocations.”
Earlier, a cross-section of journalists wearing “RTI Bill” T-shirts gathered in Parliament in an attempt to exert pressure on the House to pass the bill.
Their demand to speak to other members of the House was not granted and security did not allow them into either the Public Gallery or the Press Gallery.
The Right to Information Bill was first presented to Parliament on February 5, 2010.
On June 25, 2015, the Attorney-General moved for a second reading. The bill is awaiting passage in Parliament.
On assuming power in 2016, President Akufo-Addo gave assurances that his government would ensure the passage of the RTI Bill through Parliament.
He said passing the bill into law will encourage citizens to hold their government accountable and ensure greater transparency in governance.