The International Institute of ICT Journalism (Penplusbytes) is ready to roll out a new project on transparency and accountability of Ghana’s Oil and Gas Industry. The organization has received funding from STAR-Ghana to implement the project titled “Empowering the media to play an active role over oil and gas revenue and resources.’’
This project will on a long term increase the uptake of oil and gas stories by the Ghanaian media leading to an effective watch-dog role over Ghana’s oil and gas revenues and resources by training journalists from Ghanaian media houses to undertake investigative and in-depth stories which will better inform parliament and citizens to hold government accountable.
The project will also aim at increasing oil and gas information and knowledge exchange between the media and Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) leading to effective opportunities for national dialogue on key oil and gas revenue management issues through a collaborative online platform to enhance advocacy on oil and gas revenues and resources as well as an overall improvement in relationships between media and civil society in undertaking a concerted advocacy campaign in the oil and gas sector.
According to Penplusbytes Projects Director, Jerry Sam, “as part of the project, there will be organization of face to face forums for journalists and CSOs, mentoring and field trip as well as the development of media guide on reporting oil and gas stories which will go a long way in building the capacity of the media to effectively play their role in educating the public about the oil and gas sector whiles at the same time holding elected officials to account on Ghana’ s oil and gas revenue management.”
The project is expected to run for two years and during that period 20 Ghanaian journalists are expected to be equipped with specialized skills to effectively report on oil and gas contracts, licenses, environmental impact as a result of the industry, reporting on revenues and financial statements etc.
Penplusbytes in the past couple of years has provided leadership in training journalists to effectively report on extractive sectors in both Ghana and Uganda.
PENPLUSBYTES www.penplusbytes.org is a registered not for profit organization since 18th July 2001 with the vision of driving excellence in ICT journalism.
STAR-Ghana is a multi- donor pooled funding mechanism (Funded by DFID, DANIDA, EU and USAID) to increase the influence of civil society and Parliament in the governance of public goods and service delivery, with the ultimate goal of improving the accountability and responsiveness of Ghana's government, traditional authorities and the private sector.