Salone News

RAIC handing over ceremony

22 November 2018 at 21:48 | 1688 views

By David Patrick Kamara, Public Information Officer, RAIC.

Unisa Sesay (right in photo), the former Chairman of the Right to Access Information Commission RAIC, has pledged his unflinching support to the work of commission. He made the commitment during the official handing over ceremony of the office of the Chairman and Information Commissioner, RAIC, at its national secretariat on St. Paul Drive, IMATT.

Sesay said the commission was established at the height of the ebola scourge but was yet able to make strides that attracted institutions like the World Bank to support the commission to popularise the RAI Act, which he described a solid foundation for his successor.

He said despite the limited resources allocated to the Commission, he and his team were able to put together and validate a regulation that will give force to the Act.

Receiving the mantle of leadership, the new RAIC Chairman and Information Commissioner Dr. Ibrahim Seaga Shaw (left) thanked his predecessor for holding the fort. Dr. Shaw highlighted three areas of priority which among them is the popularization of the Act which will take the mandate of the commission beyond the promotion of accountability, transparency and good governance, but will as well promote socioeconomic development of the country, citing the misused of the Ebola funds which a fully implemented RAI Act could have salvaged, a reason why the commission under his leadership will establish synergies with public authorities to ensure they properly keep records both analog and digital to be able to promptly respond to requests when they are made.

The new RAIC chairman said he will lay emphasis on ensuring that the commission serves as a catalyst to prevent corruption, working with public authorities to follow the provisions of the act which includes proactive disclosure of information.

He added that he is not oblivious of the fact that there are challenges that range from understaff, lack of a website, mobility, staff capacity building among other, which he will ensure are addressed during his tenure.

He promised to maintain the independence of the commission and build the confidence of stakeholders including the media, civil society, and international partners to ensure accessing of information becomes an effortless endeavour.

Dr. Ibrahim Seaga Shaw assumes the leadership of the RAIC at a time when there is a global thirst for data and whilst the commission is rebranding its name and activities to suit what the RAI Act stipulates and how it can filter down to the least Sierra Leonean.

Coming from the fields of journalism and academia, Dr. Ibrahim Seaga Shaw will bring the Right to Access Information Commission to its best as a good governance institution.

The handing over ceremony was also witnessed by officials of the ministry of Information and Communications.