Ignorance of the law blamed for human rights abuses in the country
Lack of access to legal materials has been blamed for the many human rights abuses in the country.
Though Parliament has passed several laws to govern all aspects of the society, studies have shown that a huge chunk of the Ghanaian society is unaware of details in such laws.
Ranking member on the legal and constitutional affairs of parliament, Joe Osei Owusu says the development undermines the rule of law.
According to the Ghana Legal Information Institute, many Ghanaians are unaware of the rights enshrined in the constitution and other laws governing the nation.
The development is blamed on non publication of such laws in the country.
The assembly press which a public institution charged with the responsibility of printing and publishing laws passed by Parliament presently is unable to publish such materials electronically thus denying many Ghanaians access to such information.
To address the issue, the Ghana Legal Information Institute was founded to address the information gap.
The Institute aims to grant free access to laws passed by the country electronically.
At a workshop to brainstorm on the best way to make information available to the populace, co founder of the institute, OB Amoah who is also the chairman of Parliament’s subsidiary legislation says the move will facilitate access to information to Ghanaians.
‘The aim of the institute is to make available laws passed to the general public because without that we will be undermining the rule of law,” Mr. Amoah added.
According to him, the country will not make any meaningful development if the populace are not aware of the laws governing them.
‘The assembly press which is a government printer lacks the capacity to publish electronic versions of the law so if you need a particular you only have to apply for the hardcopy,” he said.
Participants of the workshop are drawn from Liberia, Sierra Leone and other West African countries under the facilitation of the University of Cape Town in South Africa and the University of Ghana law School.
They will among other things look at strategic support from justice sector stakeholders for free access to law in Ghana among other topics.
Ranking member on the legal and constitutional affairs committee of parliament, Joe Osei Owusu who opened the programme on behalf of the second deputy Speaker of Parliament told Joynews, an ignorant society is dangerous to the rule of law.
Dean of the University of Ghana law school, Professor Kofi Quarshiga is confident the project if well implemented will be beneficial to the country’s legal system.