Mr Eric Bortey, Eastern Regional Director of the National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE), has called on staff of the commission to upgrade their knowledge on civic issues.
He said it was unacceptable that staff of the commission, who were supposed to educate citizens on the constitution and their civic rights and responsibilities could themselves not understand the trend of the times and wondered how they could educate others.
Addressing a day’s seminar on the theme; “Quality Civic Education, a Necessity for Responsible Citizenship,” for district directors and accountants of the NCCE in the Eastern Region, Mr Bortey said regardless of one's position, once in the service of the commission, one must have knowledge on issues. “I am bringing this to the fore because we have employees in the commission who if you ask about the functions of the NCCE will only tell you, I am a driver or a typist,” adding it was not acceptable.
He said if the NCCE positioned itself well, it could handle educative programmes as mandated by the constitution but which was being undertaken by non governmental organizations like the Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA) due to inadequate resources and output of staff. Mr Bortey said the NCCE had been deemed relevant since the attainment of self rule and all governments, despite their colour, had formed clubs on civic education until in 1992 when it was constitutionally given the recognition and that it was the responsibility of staff to prove their existence.
He said the issue of money and other resources was not peculiar to the NCCE but all government agencies and institutions, so lack of funds should not be an excuse for relaxation. Mr Francis Kumi, Acting Deputy Regional Director of the NCCE, called for a complimentary role of the media to enable it to disseminate information on civic rights and responsibilities. He said it was important for staff to upgrade their knowledge to take civil education to new dimensions because democracy thrived when citizens understood their civic rights and responsibilities.
Mr Michael Offei, New Juaben Municipal Coordinating Director, who chaired the function, assured participants that the assemblies also had a responsibility to help the NCCE to function. He advised the district directors to draw programmes that would educate the public better and win the support of the assemblies in terms of money and other logistics.
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