Seven (7) Ghanaian journalists are currently on a field to Cote d’Ivoire from 12th – 15th of July, 2012 to interact with civil society organizations, oil companies, coastal communities and fellow journalists on the experiences of the oil and gas industry in that country.
This field trip to Cote d’Ivoire follows two other trips to the Niger Delta in Nigeria and Kribi in Cameroon. The field trip forms part of the “Strengthening Media Oversight of Extractive Industry Project” which the International Institute for ICT Journalism (Penplusbytes) is undertaking with collaboration from the Revenue Watch Institute (RWI).
According to Kwami Ahiabenu, Executive Director, Penplusbytes, “this trip to the Cote d’Ivoire will afford the trainees the opportunity to see at first hand the experiences of coastal communities in dealing with oil companies, the role of civil society in effective advocacy on oil and gas issues and company perspectives of the sector.”
Lydia Asamoah, a trainee also added that “this field-trip to Cote d’Ivoire would enable me understand and compare the issues of the oil and gas industry between Ghana and Cote d’Ivoire in a better way since the two countries have lots in common; both engage in offshore production, are close door neighbours and are within the West Africa sub-region.”
The “Strengthening Media Oversight of the Extractive Sectors Pilot Programme” which started in 2011 aims at promoting good governance and an effective oversight of the oil, gas and mining (extractive) resources and revenues. The ultimate objective is to have a knowledgeable and active media which is critical to having an informed and engaged public, civil society and Parliament that can hold government to account. The course involves international field trips, writing bursaries, editors’ liaison, workshops and individual writing projects on the extractive sector and has so far trained 100 journalists in two classes. The seven journalists on the trip form the third class.
PENPLUSBYTES www.penplusbytes.org is a registered not for profit since 18th July 2001 with the vision of driving excellence in ICT journalism. www.reportingoilandgas.org is a project of Penplusbytes.
REVENUE WATCH INSTITUTE www.revenuewatch.org promotes the transparent and accountable management of oil, gas and mineral resources for the public good.