This was how the High Commissioner opened the meeting during a courtesy call by five staff of the Board including its Executive Director, Ms. Fatmata Claire Carlton-Hanciles on Tuesday, 6 November 2018.
Ms. Carlton-Hanciles told the High Commissioner and three other staff of the Commission in attendance that the Board is an independent agency of Government. She said that the Board provides legal assistance to the poor in the country regardless of nationality. He added that the Board has provided legal assistance to over 180,000 indigents since it was established in May 2015. ‘Nationality is not a requirement for qualification for legal aid and this is why we have provided legal assistance to Mano River Union, ECOWAS, Indian, Chinese, Turkish and citizens of other countries,’ she said.
Providing update on the issue of Mr. Dogbe, Ms. Carlton-Hanciles said the convict is benefitting from regular visits to the Pademba Road Correctional Center where the Board looks at a range of issues including justice needs of inmates and overcrowding.
They also spoke about the March 2018 elections and the role played by both in ensuring they are free, fair and peaceful. Ms. Carlton-Hanciles spoke about the anti-violence campaign which saw the Board work with partners and groups prone to violence particularly the cliques.
The High Commissioner intimated the Board about some of the challenges faced by Ghanaian businesses which has forced a few to leave the country.
Ms. Carlton-Hanciles informed the High Commissioner and his team that the Board will be moving to its new office soon in the heart of its clientele close to the PZ Roundabout. ‘We are making it easier for our clients to access our office and also provide them a conducive environment while accessing services especially the Alternative Dispute Resolution services,’ Ms. Carlton-Hanciles said.
The meeting was climaxed with discussion around issues of collaboration with the Legal Aid agency in Ghana in the areas of best practices, capacity building and experience sharing which will see staff from both schemes exchange visits and engages in study tours. Also, it will explore opportunities for staff of the Board to study in Ghana.