National Stakeholders Forum on the Media & Local Governance Held

The Media Foundation for West Africa on Thursday 29th May, 2014 organised a national stakeholders forum. The forum was on the theme, Ghana’s Decentralisation Process -The Role of the Media in Fostering Participatory &Accountable Local Governance.

At MFWA we believe that citizens have a fundamental right to express their opinions and influence development in their local communities. The media plays a central role in ensuring this. They constitute platform for civic participation and interaction with local authorities. Furthermore, the media is an efficient channel for citizens to communicate their opinions. Thus, it is important to include local media when talking about strengthening accountable and participatory local governance.
“We arranged the National Stakeholders’ Forum to bring together stakeholders from the local governance sector and stakeholders from the media. Our objective was to highlight the challenges of citizens’ participation in local governance and the specific role the media can play in addressing these“, Programme Officer Abigal Larbi explained.

In general the forum was assessed as a success. In accordance with the objective, an expert panel identified important issues. Dr. Callistus Mahama, Head of Local Government Services, focused on the implementation of the new Decentralization Policy Framework, where especially citizen participation still needs to be implemented. Mr. George Kyei Baffour, Local Governance Analyst, reviewed local governance regulation compared to reality on the ground to identify areas which needs to be focused on by the media. Mrs. Charlotte Osei, Chair, NCCE talked about the challenges connected to the complexity in the local governance system and the lack of civic ownership. Finally, Prof. Kwame Karikari, School of Communication Studies, gave his suggestions to initiatives to be done for the media to help in overcoming some of the key challenges in the local governance sector.

Around 120 people participated in the forum. This included Hon. Emmanuel Kwadwo Agyekum, Deputy Minister of Local Government and Rural Development, the president of GJA, MMDCEs from the Greater Accra Region as well as representatives from leading media houses and civil society organizations across the country.
The forum was chaired by Dr. Esther Offei-Aboagye, Director of Institute of Local Government Studies, and discussions were moderated by Bernard Koku Avle from Citi FM. A media  guide  published  by the MFWA  was  also  launched  at  the forum. The National Stakeholders’ Forum is part of MFWA’s focus on media, democracy and development and was sponsored by IBIS-Ghana.

The  Deputy  Minister  for Local Government  and Rural Development, Hon. Emmanuel Kwadwo Agyekum  shares   his  views  on  the  forum.

The Media Foundation for West Africa on Thursday 29th May, 2014 organised a national stakeholders forum. The forum was on the theme, Ghana’s Decentralisation Process -The Role of the Media in Fostering Participatory &Accountable Local Governance.
At MFWA we believe that citizens have a fundamental right to express their opinions and influence development in their local communities. The media plays a central role in ensuring this. They constitute platform for civic participation and interaction with local authorities. Furthermore, the media is an efficient channel for citizens to communicate their opinions. Thus, it is important to include local media when talking about strengthening accountable and participatory local governance.
“We arranged the National Stakeholders’ Forum to bring together stakeholders from the local governance sector and stakeholders from the media. Our objective was to highlight the challenges of citizens’ participation in local governance and the specific role the media can play in addressing these“, Programme Officer Abigal Larbi explained.

In general the forum was assessed as a success. In accordance with the objective, an expert panel identified important issues. Dr. Callistus Mahama, Head of Local Government Services, focused on the implementation of the new Decentralization Policy Framework, where especially citizen participation still needs to be implemented. Mr. George Kyei Baffour, Local Governance Analyst, reviewed local governance regulation compared to reality on the ground to identify areas which needs to be focused on by the media. Mrs. Charlotte Osei, Chair, NCCE talked about the challenges connected to the complexity in the local governance system and the lack of civic ownership. Finally, Prof. Kwame Karikari, School of Communication Studies, gave his suggestions to initiatives to be done for the media to help in overcoming some of the key challenges in the local governance sector.

Around 120 people participated in the forum. This included Hon. Emmanuel Kwadwo Agyekum, Deputy Minister of Local Government and Rural Development, the president of GJA, MMDCEs from the Greater Accra Region as well as representatives from leading media houses and civil society organizations across the country.
The forum was chaired by Dr. Esther Offei-Aboagye, Director of Institute of Local Government Studies, and discussions were moderated by Bernard Koku Avle from Citi FM. A media  guide  published  by the MFWA  was  also  launched  at  the forum. The National Stakeholders’ Forum is part of MFWA’s focus on media, democracy and development and was sponsored by IBIS-Ghana.

The  Deputy  Minister  for Local Government  and Rural Development, Hon. Emmanuel Kwadwo Agyekum  shares   his  views  on  the  forum.

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