Transparent & Accountable Governance

UNCT-GH-Participatory-Governance-PhotoCredit-UNDP-Ghana(Photo credit: UNDP in Ghana)

 

Good governance is not an end in itself but a practice that provides for greater quality of life for peaceful existence, more efficient delivery of services and growth of socio-economic opportunities. Improved governance is the backbone of prosperity and wellbeing.

Progress towards inclusive socioeconomic growth, protection of rights and improved wellbeing can be achieved by the continual deepening of democracy and expansion of public participation. Utilisation of quality and timely data is an important driver of good governance, enabling evidence-based development planning and informed decision-making. The transparent and accountable exercise of political, economic, and administrative management increases public confidence and equitable participation to underpin sustained development.

This thematic area is grounded in two of the GSGDA II pillars, namely the 7th, on human development, productivity and employment, and the 8th, on transparent, responsive, accountable governance.

Anti-Corruption: Ghana has strengthened key mechanisms in the fight against corruption. A 10-year National Anti-Corruption Action Plan (NACAP), approved in July 2014, provides a comprehensive framework for addressing corruption. Ghana completed its United Nations Convention Against Corruption (UNCAC) review, and began implementing some of the resulting recommendations. Legislative review recommendations led to the drafting of new bills now before Parliament – on witness protection, public servants conduct, and whistle blowing. In what was a priority in the anti-corruption campaign, the Ghana Revenue Authority implemented recommendations from a baseline study to improve transparency and accountability.

Rule of Law and Access to Justice: Ghana improved access to and enhanced the efficiency of its legal and justice system. GoG sought to improve delivery of justice through Legal and Justice Sector reforms, which enhanced inter-institutional collaboration among criminal justice institutions. The Commission for Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ) resolved 83% of administrative justice cases received in 2015 compared to less than 30% in 2012 as a result of nationwide staff capacity development on case management. Significant improvements in maritime security were made after an assessment had identified challenges and capacity gaps.

Local Government and Decentralisation: GoG has improved transparency and accountability in public affairs and financial resource administration and management at local governance level. Engagements between duty bearers and right holders have improved due to the activation of the district Public Relations and Complaints Committee (PRCC) in selected districts. These engagements have contributed to transparency and accountability as well as public service delivery, especially in the area of sanitation and health care. Various engagement platforms have also improved the participation of young people and persons with disabilities at local government level.

Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment: GoG launched the National Gender Policy in 2015 to mainstream gender equality concerns into the national development processes. This policy is intended to ensure that women and men, girls and boys, as well as the vulnerable, marginalised and persons with disabilities, participate in decision-making governance processes.

Peace Building and Conflict Resolution: Over the years, Ghana has established a peace infrastructure which has gained international respect. Regional Peace Councils (RPC) have expanded the geographic scope of the National Peace Council. The peace councils revived the Bawku Inter-Ethnic Peace Committee (BIEPC), and intervened in conflicts between Muslims and Christians in 2015 and emerging conflicts in Tuobodom, Bimbilla, Tafo, Kwapong, Sankore, and Portor, among others. 

GoG has achieved considerable success in generating useful and quality socio-economic data on a timely basis, e.g. living standard survey, national accounts, demographic and health survey, to inform policy, programming and planning. The availability of such data sets (administrative and survey) has informed a series of medium-term development frameworks and MDG Reports.

Ghana’s generation and use of socio-economic data informed its substantive efforts to reduce poverty. Leading the region in its attainment of MDG 1, Ghana reduced extreme poverty over the years from a record high of 51% (early 1990s) to 24% (2013).

In the area of Transparent & Accountable Governance, UN Ghana aims to achieve the following results:

National Institutions on Democracy and Peace (UNDAF Outcome 10)

  • Greater institutional capacity of key national bodies to deepen democracy and implement justice sector reforms
  • Advancements in local governance and decentralisation
  • Greater awareness of women’s rights and inclusion of women and youth in democratic processes and local governance
  • Strengthened institutions in the national peace architecture and anti-corruption campaign

Data for Evidence-based Planning and Decision-making (UNDAF Outcome 11)

  • Improved production of reliable and timely data by GSS and key MDAs
  • Improved capacity of policy-makers to use data in evidence-based planning and monitoring wellbeing of all social groups
  • Enhanced planning processes and implementation monitoring of medium-term frameworks
  • Partnerships facilitated with Ghanaian Diaspora support socio-economic development
  • Greater capability for reporting on HIV/AIDS