Madrid, 28 May 2020 – ARAP Steering Committee members gathered online for the first time to review its last quarterly activities and questions related to the next programme activities during the COVID-19 pandemic. This quarterly, the 15th Steering Committee was chaired by Mr Martin Amoyaw from the Legal Aid Commission.
The Steering Committee, which provides support, guidance and oversight the progress of the programme, compromised representatives of ARAP’s coordination unit, the Delegation of the European Union to Ghana, the National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE), the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ), the Ghana Police Service (GPS), the Attorney General (AG), the Judiciary and Judicial Service (JS), the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the Legal Aid Commission (LAC) and the Economic and Organized Crime Organisation (EOCO).
At the meeting, ARAP’s Team Leader, Mrs Ana Sanchez, provided a general overview of the 18 activities supported during the quarter under review. Furthermore, she highlighted that the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic and the restrictive measures adopted has affected the regular development of the implementation period.
Some of these activities successfully implemented include:
- The Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice spearheaded the sign of an Anti-Corruption Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to combat corruption and crime among 11 institutions. As part of the agreement, there will be exchange information, promotion for synergy and better co-ordination of activities, enhancement of the capacity of KAIs to address challenges of emerging methods of corruption and crime and minimising the potential for mandate overlaps. The signing of the MoU is another milestone in Ghana’s efforts to combat corruption and crime.
- The Environmental Protection Agency conducted an “Orientation Workshops: Complaints Management Pilot two” in Accra and Kumasi. The objectives of this activity were: A more efficient and effective process for joint management of environment-related complaints involving the EPA and MMDAs; Standardised collection and management of information about the complaint (due to adoption of templates and guidelines); A cost-effective, efficient and effective mechanism for communicating information about complaints (a dedicated WhatsApp platform); Complainants more satisfied with how their complaints are managed; and greater transparency (to the public) and accountability (of public officials) around complaints management.
- The Legal Aid Commission efforts were focused on the “Validation workshop on Draft Strategic Plan 2020-2024” in Kumasi to ensure it reflects and meets the needs of the commission.
- The ongoing NCCE Anti-COVID-19 Public Education Campaign which seeks to sensitise people within the Region. ARAP is coordinating the provision of a mobile cinema van to continue with the campaign.
The ARAP Team Leader informed the SC that the outbreak of the pandemic has deeply impacted the programme. ARAP had to adopt a Contingency Plan; Review the working plans and the remaining activities; and Design a “Concrete activity” (to add to the previous foreseen under the programme and the workplans) to support the national efforts in combating the effects of the pandemic.
As part of the COVID-19 ARAP concrete action, the programme will improve a Safe – Secure and Effective Work Environment by promoting ICT tools - online work, provide new digital platforms to work online (Webex – Teams ), routers Fix, routers Mobile Mifi and data connection packages.
Furthermore, a Contingency Plan has been developed and it has been being updated periodically as well as a Communications Plan to maintain the contact and coordination among all the stakeholders.
The first online Steering Committee concluded successfully, with clear lines drawn on how to continue advancing the programme
The next 16th Steering Committee will be held on Thursday, 27 August 2020.
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