In a recent development, the Ghana Police Service has been slapped with a hefty fine of GH¢100,000 due to its refusal to adhere to the directives issued by the Right to Information (RTI) Commission. These directives mandated the Police Service to grant an applicant access to the requested information.
The Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative (CHRI), Africa, had specifically requested information regarding the status of cases involving police brutality. Despite addressing the inquiry to the Inspector General of Police, the Police Service chose to completely disregard it.
In a statement issued by the RTI Commission, they underscored the Respondent’s failure to promptly address the applicant’s request and the blatant disregard exhibited towards the Commission’s correspondence.
“Based on the Respondent’s failure to make decisions on the Applicant’s application lodged with it, the Respondent has clearly failed to perform its obligation under Act 989. This is coupled with its failure to respond to the Commission’s letter received by it.
“Such a posture by the Respondent is not to be encouraged as it is an affront to the right of access to information enshrined under Article 21(1) (f) of the 1992 Constitution of Ghana and affirmed by Act 989 and same ought to be disapproved in strong terms.
“For this reason, an administrative penalty of GH¢ 100,000.00 is imposed on the Respondent and this shall be payable to the Commission not later than 14 days after receipt of this decision of the Commission by the Respondent.
“The penalty so imposed shall attract an additional default penalty rate of l0% on the principal penalty sum of GH¢100,000.00 in the event of default for any additional 14 days thereafter”, the statement read.