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SIERRA LEONE GOVERNMENT PRESS RELEASE
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THE CHAIRMAN AND COMMISSIONERS OF THE RIGHT TO ACCESS INFORMATION COMMISSION CALLS ON THE INFORMATION AND COMMUNICATIONS MINISTER
The newly appointed Chairman and Commissioners of the Right to Access Information Commission has paid a courtesy call on the Minister of Information and Communications in order to familiarize themselves with staff of their supervising Ministry and to further build the confidence of the Ministry about their determination to enhance the concept of the access to informatin.
Receiving the Delegation, the Information and Communications Minister, Alhaji Alpha Kanu congratulated the Chairman and his Commissioners for their appointment and encouraged them to take their work very seriously and set the pace for the effectiveness of the Commission.
He noted that their performance, as the first ever Chairman and Commissioners of the Information Commission, will give credence to the democratic institution and further enhance the effectiveness of the flow of information.
The Minister pointed out that the Government of President Ernest Bai Koroma is not averse to the flow of information and has therefore never stifled any media institution as journalists are allowed to perform their function freely without any form of intimidation by Government. He furthered pointed out that over 52 radio stations and about 36 functioning newspapers are currently operating in the country without any fear of being gagged by Government.
The Information and Communication Minister reminder the Commissioners that the media landscape in the country is being overseen by the Independent Media Commission , an Independent Institution created by an Act of Parliament to ensure that media practitioners perform their duties in line with the prescribed Media Code of Practice in order to enhance sanity in the field of journalism.
Assuring the Chairman and his Commissioners of the Ministry’s unflinching support, the Minister implored them to work very hard to enhance the credibility of the Commission saying that it is a very powerful institution that has the mandate to enter into any government institution to seek information.
Chairman of the Commission Unisa Sesay while stating the purpose of their visit earlier assured the Minister of his determination to fully perform the functions for which he was appointed. He applauded the Ministry for their invaluable support in putting together all the documents initiating the Access to Information.
The Deputy Government Spokesman, Ajibu Jalloh, also congratulated the Chairman and his Commissioners and assured them of the support of the Office of the Government Spokesman and encouraged them to work hard in order to realize the dream of the President.
The National Publicity and Outreach Coordinator in the Office of the Government Spokesman, Abdulai Bayraytay congratulated the Chairman and his Commissioners. He also encouraged them to ensure that they enhance access to information and make good use of the Information Act as this document will guide their performance. He further assured them that the Office of the Government Spokesman is always willing to work closely with the Commission to enhance its effectiveness.
The Permanent Secretary Mr. Paul Sandi reiterated the Ministry's fullest support to the Commission and admonished them to take the work very seriously.
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