USAID Justice Sector Support Activity makes progress

Implementing partners of the USAID Justice Sector Support Activity have called on the Media to wage a sustained campaign by highlighting human rights abuses people are subjected to, especially by the Police.

It is to help address this unfortunate phenomenon that the partners have introduced a digital platform called the Case Tracking System, CTS, to enable them to monitor and keep track of criminal cases from Justice Sector Institutions.

A day’s workshop has therefore been organised in Accra for Journalists from seven regions to equip them with the Tracking System, and the critical role the media can play in ending impunity.

As part of efforts to improve justice delivery in the country, Government in 2018 launched the electronic integrated criminal justice Case Tracking System, CTS, project to support key justice sector institutions.

They are the Ghana Police Service, Ghana Prisons Service, Attorney General’s Department, Legal Aid Commission, Economic and Organised Crime Office, EOCO, and Judicial Service.

The CTS, being supported by USAID, is to among others enable the key actors in the justice delivery chain to electronically access and track the various stages of criminal cases from the point of arrest, investigations, prosecution, conviction, rehabilitation and release.

To monitor and sustain the effective implementation of the CTS, the Legal Resources Centre in collaboration with the Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative and the Crime Check Foundation is spearheading the three-year project with funding from the USAID.

The System Monitoring and Evaluation Specialist of the Legal Resources Centre, Samuel Kombian, said the CTS is being implemented in 40 districts in seven regions. He said Community Case Tracking Groups have been formed and are monitoring the CTS process.

The collaboration with the media among other things is to support public and education about access to justice sector services and advocacy to hold justice institutions accountable.

The Executive Director of Crime Check Foundation, Ibrahim Oppong Kwarteng, encouraged the media to consistently highlight issues of human rights abuses by the officers of the justice sector institutions. This is because of the media’s critical role of educating and informing the public on these issues.

The Communication Specialist at the USAID, Yooku Ata-Bedu, urged the journalists to focus their reportage on the implementation of the CTS in order for it to achieve its goals.

The participants were also taken through Ghana’s Justice System, General Overview of the USAID Justice Sector Support Activity, Public Interest and Ethics and GJA’s Code of Ethics and Ethical Guidelines for reportage.

By: Seth Eyiah.

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