Funding memory institutions in Ghana: The case of Public Records and Archives Administration Department (PRAAD)

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Asamoah, Catherine
Akussah, Prof. Harry
Mensah, Monica
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University of Ghana
Information is the beacon of organizations globally. The need to properly manage information to serve as evidence of every activity to ensure accountability, transparency and probity is an essential but often ignored practice in most memory institutions worldwide and especially in Africa. Studies have shown that more focus is directed towards media, civil society, human rights and parliamentary democracy to the neglect of memory institutions when it comes to governance issues. Charged with the responsibility to ‘preserve Ghana’s collective memory by facilitating and overseeing the efficient management of records of all MDAs, PRAAD’s mandate has been limited as a result of the department been starved financially. Support to PRAAD over the years has basically come from donor agencies like IRMT, DFID, and IDA of the World Bank, Danish government, National Archives of Netherlands among others. Consequently, this paper explores ways through which PRAAD is funded and attempts to identify ways in which PRAAD can strengthen its funding capacity through nationwide advocacy, publicity and other grant seeking activities. The study was guided by the qualitative paradigm. The Director of PRAAD, together with the heads of all the three departments (records centre, preservation service branch (PSB) and the archives unit) were interviewed. A major finding was that lack of funding and logistics had undermined the role of PRAAD. The paper further emphasized on the need for government to intensify support for PRAAD to enable the department to effectively and competently perform its mandate for the development of Ghana through safeguarding the nation’s collective memory for informed decision making.
Memory Institutions , Public Records , Funding , National Archives , Ghana