Crime Check Foundation (CCF) has trained a newly constituted twelve-member Community Monitoring Team (CMT) in the Ashanti Region to equip them to monitor and report abuses including potential jail situations that vagrants and other voiceless persons face in the enforcement of Local Assembly bye-laws.
The Project Manager for CCF, Cosmos Akorli who facilitated the training encouraged members of the CMT to do their job diligently because their work in identifying issues in their localities will inform collective redress actions by CCF and relevant stakeholder institutions.
The 1-day training was held on Thursday, 30th September 2021, as part of the implementation of the Foundation’s “Decriminalizing Vagrancy Laws and Advocacy” (DVLA) project which seeks to create ‘an enabling environment for ‘vagrants’ to know, claim and exercise their rights to end criminalization of homeless persons and other categories of people affected by vagrancy laws in Ghana’.
The project is being funded by the Open Society Initiative for West Africa (OSIWA).
Mr. Akorli took the members of the CMT who were all Unit Community members of their respective Municipal Assemblies through the goal of the project, project context, expected results, community monitoring, as well as the relevance of the CMTs in attaining the overall objective of the project.
“We want to urge you to visit locations where vagrants are located to identify issues that affect them as critical feedback to inform appropriate response by CCF and other duty-bearers such as the local Assemblies and Justice Sector Institutions,” he entreated them.
He assured them of CCF and OSIWA’s support for their monitoring activities because the two organizations are determined to reduce human rights violations, arrests, fines and imprisonment of vagrants under vagrancy laws in Ghana.
About OSIWA: The Open Society Initiative for West Africa (OSIWA), established in 2000, is a grant-making and advocacy organization focused on equality, justice, democratic governance, human rights, and knowledge generation. It is part of the global network of Open Society Foundations spread across 37 countries around the world. He said the Assemblies outrageously fine these vagrants for committing petty offences.
Citizens’ Complaints: To report harassment and potential imprisonment under a local assembly bye-law, please contact or Whatsapp: 0559544199 / 0507353539.
By Cosmos Akorli and Rudolph Nandi