Recalling the charter of the United Nations and the International Bill of Human Rights and various relevant International instruments and Conventions, especially, the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and the National Disability Act, Act 715,
Reaffirming the importance of access to the physical, social, economic and cultural environment, to health, education, employment, transportation, and to information and communication for persons with Disabilities to fully enjoy the Human Rights and the fundamental freedoms enshrined in the 1992 Constitution, the laws of the Republic of Ghana,
Mindful of the need to promote the realization of the objectives of the said constitution, laws and policy, acknowledging that discrimination against any person on the basis of disability is a violation of the inherent dignity and worth of the Human person,
Considering that as journalists, we can champion and promote the rights of persons with Disabilities to have equal opportunity to be actively involved in decision making processes and programs, including those directly concerning them,
The Organizations of Persons with Disabilities under the non-political and non-profit making of the Network of journalists For the Promotion of the Rights of Persons with Disabilities-Ghana Chapter hereby adopts this constitution.
ARTICLE 1: NAME & MOTTO
1.1 The name of the network shall be: Network of Journalists for the Promotion of the Rights of Persons with Disabilities in Africa-Ghana Chapter and the acronym shall be – PROMOAFRICA.
1.2 The motto of the Network shall be: “Write with Passion”.
ARTICLE 2: AIMS & OBJECTIVES
The aims and objectives of the network shall be:
(a) To shape the public image of persons with disabilities.
(b) Use Media initiatives and as individual journalists help people who feel less isolated, and at the same time challenge negative stereotype in communities.(c) Persons with disabilities should be interviewed on topical issues in our daily news reporting, and be allowed to have their own voice.
(d) To advance the common interest of persons with disabilities;
(e) To co-operate with other organizations having similar or corresponding interests or objectives;
(f) To serve as a pressure group on all matters affecting PWDs;
(g) To promote the human rights of persons with disabilities including children with disabilities, as enshrined in the constitution and the laws of Ghana, including the right to employment, education, transportation and health services
(g) To do publications, research, provide information and documentation on PWDs in Ghana.
ARTICLE 3: MEMBERSHIP
3. (1) (a) Membership of this network shall comprise all practicing journalists, freelance journalists and other media personalities interested in Disability issues.
(2) Organisations for and with interest in disability issues shall be admitted to associate Membership of the network, but shall not have voting rights.
(3) There shall be a registration fee for new members. This shall be determined by the National Executive Committee.
(4) The criteria for admission of new members of the network shall include;
a. Must be a trained journalist
b. Working for a recognised media house
c. Evidence of being a journalists ( freelance)
ARTICLE 4: MATTERS FOR THE NETWORK
4. (1) the network shall deal with matters that are common, general or cross cutting in relation to the disability movement.
ARTICLE 5: FUNDING
5. (1) all member of this network shall pay an annual subscription to be determined by the National Executive Committee.
(3) The network shall solicit, receive and accept gifts, bequests or legacies of any description for the achievement of the objectives of the network.
ARTICLE 6: EXECUTIVE COMMITTE AND ITS BUSINESS
6. (1) The Executive Committee shall comprise the Executive Board members and five (5) delegates each from the various regions where the network has members.
(2) Not less than forty (40) percent of the number of delegates at the delegate assembly shall be made up of women.
(3) Each member shall exercise a single vote on any issue discussed at the executive committee meeting.
(4) In case of equality of votes the president shall have a casting vote.
(5) The Executive Committee meetings shall consider and adopt:
a. The report of the president;
b. The report of each region;
c. The audited accounts of the network and
d. the work plan and budget of the network.
(6) The executive committee meeting shall review:
a. membership registration fees and
b. membership subscription dues.
(7) The executive committee shall:
a. Ratify the admission of new members;
b. appoint the executive members and
c. consider any other matter concerning the network and its member organizations.
ARTICLE 7: THE EXECUTIVE BOARD: COMPOSITION, TENURE AND FUNCTIONS
7. (1) The Executive committee shall comprise:
a) The substantive Presidents of the network;
b) The Vice-Presidents.
c) An executive secretary.
d) Financial officer who shall be a woman.
e) . Seven appointed members
(3) (a).The tenure of office of the President and the executive committee shall be four (4) years. And shall seek another additional term
(b) The positions of the Presidents shall rotate among the print and electronic media organizations.
(4) (a) The Executive committee shall have general supervision of the affairs of the
Network between its members;
(b) Shall make recommendations to the Organizations of Persons with Disabilities, the Secretariat and the Executive Committee.
(c) Shall perform such other duties as are specified in the Constitution.
(d) The executive shall implement the decisions of the Executive Committee.
(e) The executive shall be responsible for the true accounts of all monies received or expended and of all assets and liabilities of the network.
(f) The Executive shall reserve the right to appoint committees to deal with specific issues.
(g) 1. The Executive shall submit the accounts of the outgoing fiscal year to the auditors not later than three months after the close of the year.
2. The Board shall submit to the Annual delegates Assembly of the Network the final account as the close of the previous year.
ARTICLE 8: POWERS AND DUTIES OF THE OFFICE BEARERS
8. (1) President Shall:
a. convene all meetings of the executive;
b. supervise the activities of the network;
c. implement the decisions of the Executive committee;
d. be co-signatory to the network Accounts.
e. represent the network at Forums.
(2) (a) The first Vice President shall:
a. assist the President in the performance of his functions and duties;
b. act as President in the absence of the president.
(3) The financial officer shall:
a.. be co-signatory to the network’s bank account and
b. keep and account for all the network finances.
(4) Executive Secretary shall;
a. runs the official work of the network
b. be responsible for all the documentation of the network
c. report directly to the president and act as the president in the absent of the vice-president
ARTICLE 9: MEETINGS
9. (1) The Delegates Assembly shall be held every two years.
(2) Executive Board shall meet quarterly (four times in a year).
(3) (a) Notice concerning Delegates Assembly shall be served at least two (2) months in advance.
(b) Notice concerning Executive Board meeting shall be served at least one (1) month in advance.
(4) The quorum for meetings shall:
(a) In the case of the Delegate Assembly, be two-thirds of the delegates expected to attend;
(b) In the case of the Executive Board two-thirds of the number of the members.
(5) Emergency Meetings shall be held as and when necessary.
(6) All decisions on important matters shall be taken by consensus or by a two-thirds majority of those present and voting.
ARTICLE 10: THE SECRETARIAT
10.(1) There is established by this constitution a Secretariat which shall: be accessible to all members.
(2)There shall be an Executive Secretary of the Secretariat who shall be appointed by the Executive Board, and he/she shall perform the following functions.
(a) Shall convene meetings in consultation with the President
(b) Shall keep minutes of all meetings.
(c) Shall conduct general correspondence of the network and keep necessary records.
(d) Shall carry out the supervision of the day to day activities of the Secretariat.
(e) Shall be responsible for the implementation of the decisions taken by the Delegates Assembly and by the Executive Board.
(f) Shall prepare reports of the network in consultation with the President.
(g) Shall appoint other junior administrative staff as and when necessary
(3) Other Staff: The Executive Board shall appoint such other senior administrative staff as it may deem necessary
ARTICLE 11: FINANCIAL ADMINISTRATION
11.(1) Money not to be directly used for the day to day administration/activities of the Network shall be deposited in such bank or banks as may be approved by the Executive Board.
(2) Bonds, Securities, or other capital assets shall be kept in a safe way as advised by the Auditors of the network.
(3) The books of accounts shall be kept at the network’s Secretariat.
(4) The accounts shall be inspected by an external auditor at the end of the fiscal or financial year.
(5) The auditing shall be concluded within three months from the date the accounts are received by the auditors.
(6) The auditors shall be authorized to inspect and report on the affairs of the network and its accounts annually.
(7) The President of the network and the other signatory to the accounts are authorized to issue and draw Cheques on behalf of the network.
ARTICLE 12: REGISTRATION
12.(1) The network shall be registered at the Registrar-General’s Department as an Association Limited by Guarantee and at the Department of Social Welfare as a voluntary organization.
(2) The network shall be affiliated to other similar International and Local bodies.
ARTICLE 13: AMENDMENTS
14. (1) Amendments to this Constitution shall be approved by consensus at a Delegates Assembly.
(2) Any proposed Amendment shall be communicated to member organizations and the Executive Board among member organizations and the Executive Board of network not less than 4 months prior to the Delegates Assembly at which it is intended to be considered.
(3) The decision to recommend a proposed constitutional amendment for the consideration of the Delegate assembly shall be made by the votes of a two- thirds majority of the executive board.
ARTICLE 14: DISSOLUTION
15. (1) The dissolution of the network shall require decisions by two-thirds (2/3) vote at two (2) consecutive Delegates Assemblies.
(2) In the event of the dissolution of the network, all funds, assets and liabilities shall be equally shared among the member.
(3) Any resolution to dissolve the network should involve the participation and consent of all members.
ARTICLE 15: CONFLICT RESOLUTION
16. (1) all members of the network shall attempt in good faith to negotiate a settlement to any dispute or difference that may arise.
(2) If the dispute or difference is not resolved by negotiation the members shall refer it to mediation.
(3) If the members fail to resolve the dispute or difference within 30 days of the commencement of mediation, the dispute or difference shall be referred to arbitration in accordance with the arbitration act, 1951 (Act 38).
ARTICLE 16 SANCTIONABLE CONDUCTS
17 (1) the following shall constitute grounds for sanctions;
a) Any conduct likely to bring the name or image of the network into disrepute, public ridicule or contempt;
b) Any conduct involving criminality, illegality, fraud or moral turpitude and
c) Incompetence, negligence, mismanagement or inability to perform the functions or duties of one’s office.
(2) Upon receipt of a complaint in writing in relation to any matter which constitutes a ground for sanctions from any member of the network, the Executive Board shall set up a committee of not more than five persons to enquire into the matter.
(3) The committee which shall sit in-camera shall submit a report together with its recommendations to the Executive Board within two weeks.
(4) The Executive Board shall consider the report of the committee and take such action upon it as it deems appropriate.
(5) Where a vacancy occurs as a result of the removal or suspension of an officer by the Executive Board, the network shall nominate an individual to fill the vacancy for the remainder of the term of the officer removed or suspended.
ARTICLE 17 : MISCELLANEOUS MATTERS
18.(1) The network shall have power to:
a) Establish committees as and when necessary,
b) Appoint Patrons or a Board of Trustees.
(2) The criteria for the appointment of members to the Board of Patrons or Trustees shall be determined by the Executive Board.
(3) Considerations regarding eligibility for nomination or appointment to the bodies or organs of the network shall include sensitivity to gender and hard work.
(4) Any issue relating to the interpretation of this constitution shall be determined or clarified by the Board or a relevant committee with the assistance of a legal resource person. promulgate
(5) This constitution shall be interpreted in accordance with the 1992 constitution of the republic of Ghana and in case of conflict the latter shall prevail.
ARTICLE 18: ANNIVERSARIES OF THE NETWORK
The following shall be observed as network anniversary dates:
a. 23rd June Founders Day
b. 23rd June National Day of the Disabled
c. 3rd December International Day of the Disabled
Promulgated 23rd June 2009