The Public Utilities Regulatory Commission (PURC) organised a three-day training programme in Administrative Hearing Processes and Adjudication from April 12-14, 2023.
The objective of the training programme was to provide awareness on the Commission’s quasi-judicial responsibilities so as to strengthen the Formal Hearing Processes of the Commission and ensure compliance with the law. It was also to establish robust administrative hearing processes in the investigation and determination of contentious utility issues which cannot be dealt with through internal settlement and mediation processes of the Commission.
Participants of the training programme included Commissioners, external experts with engineering and legal background and selected staff of the Commission.
The resource persons for the programme were drawn from the judiciary. These were His Lordship Justice Issifu Tanko Omoro Amadu, a Justice of the Supreme Court of Ghana & Director, Judicial Training Institute and Justice Kweku Tawiah Ackaah-Boafo, a Justice of the Court of Appeal.
The training methodology was interactive as the facilitators ensured that the participants thoroughly understood the topics being taught. The facilitators engaged the participants in discussions and kept the forum open for questions, comments and suggestions. These were supported with power-point presentations, lectures, case-studies and group discussions.
For the first day of the programme, participants were given an overview of administrative law and adjudication. The second day saw participants being taken through the processes of conducting proceedings as well as making and delivering decisions. The final day of the programme was dedicated to moot hearings. The hearings were to simulate a real court environment to give participants an opportunity to put their learning into practice. Participants were guided on how to take evidence and prepare clear and concise decisions.
The general feedback at the end of the programme was very positive. Participants were fully appreciative of the content and the delivery by the facilitators. The participants also added that the training had equipped them with the needed confidence and ability to handle administrative hearings and praised the Commission for providing such an informative and well-organized programme.