Akufo-Addo Only Paying Lip Service To Corruption Fight – Amidu

Former Special Prosecutor, Martin Amidu Former Special Prosecutor, Martin Amidu

Former Special Prosecutor, Martin Alamisi Burnes Kaiser Amidu, has launched fresh attacks on President Nana Akufo-Addo, calling his public statements on the fight against corruption as "highfalutin".

In his latest 'epistle' issued on Monday, July 12, Mr Amidu, drew the attention of all and sundry to the expiry of the three-year mandate of the governing board of the Office of Special Prosecutor (OSP) and asked civil society to be particularly alert in the selection of their representative.

"At the time President Akufo-Addo was making his highfalutin statements he knew that he had collaborated with his dual nationality citizen friends populating a particular Civil Society Organization to rig the nomination and electoral process for selecting the representative of the Anti-Corruption Civil Society Organizations," he wrote.

"The paradox is that the Anti-Corruption Civil Society Organizations knew this and had no courage to ensure that the sanctity of the nomination process of their representative was not raped.

"Their attempt to rent a press to speak for them did not work because of the hypocrisy involved and the unthinkability that members of Anti-Corruption Civil Society Organizations would be afraid to fight this form of corruption themselves."

The former Attorney General, stressed that he is making the facts known this time around in order to ensure that the Office performs its role without partiality.

"The Office of the Special Prosecutor needs to be operationalized and established as a specialized independent anti-corruption agency and not an adjunct of the Presidency as it has been for the past eight months.

"The Office will be of no use to the taxpayer if it is going to be another law enforcement and intelligence agency like the police service and other so called 'independent accountability agencies' who every reasonable and rational Ghanaian knows are tied to the apron strings of the rhetorical President Nana Akufo Addo and 'The Family'."

Mr Amidu also wrote drawing the public's attention on the expiry of the tenure of the governing board of the Office of Special Prosecutor, indicating that the President had appointed his crony as representative of the Anti-Corruption Civil Society Organizations.

He insinuated that the past eight months has seen the Office become an "adjunct" of the Presidency.

"Now that the three-year tenure of the Governing Board of the Office has expired, these facts need to be known so that patriotic Ghanaians will be alert and support the Anti-Corruption Civil Society Organizations to ensure that this time round their chosen representative is sworn-in by the President when the new Board comes to be inaugurated.

"The Office of the Special Prosecutor needs to be operationalized and established as a specialized independent anti-corruption agency and not an adjunct of the Presidency as it has been for the past eight months."

Lawyer Kissi Agyebeng, has since been nominated to replace Mr Amidu, though Deputy Special Prosecutor Cynthia Lamptey is acting in an interim capacity.

Meanwhile, the Appointments Committee of Parliament, has slated the vetting of Mri Agyebeng for Thursday, July 22, 2021.

This was contained in a press statement issued by the Clerk to the Appointments Committee of parliament on Monday, July 12, 2021.

According to the press statement, the vetting will take place at the committee rooms 1,2, and 3 of the New Administration Block of Parliament House at 10:00 am.

The Attorney-General, Godfred Yeboah Dame, nominated the law lecturer and private legal practitioner as a replacement for Martin Amidu, who resigned from the position in November 2020.

Section 13 (8) of the Office of the Special Prosecutor Act, 2017 (Act 959) requires the President to appoint a person qualified for appointment as Special Prosecutor within six months of the Office becoming vacant.

The Office of the Special Prosecutor has the mandate to investigate and prosecute all suspected corruption and corruption-related offences as pertaining to public officers, politically exposed persons, and persons in the private sector alleged to have been involved in any corruption and corruption-related offences.

Apart from initiating investigations on its own, Act 959 gives the Office of the Special Prosecutor the power to receive and investigate complaints of alleged corruption from the public or investigate suspected corruption or corruption-related offences upon referral from public bodies such as the Attorney General's Department, the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ) and the Economic and Organised Crime Office (EOCO).

Kissi Agyebeng was called to the Ghana Bar in October 2003 and holds a Bachelor of Laws (LLB) degree from the University of Ghana, as well as Master of Laws (LLM) degrees from Schulich School of Law, Dalhousie University, Canada, and Cornell Law School, USA.

He has, since 2006, been teaching Criminal Law at the University of Ghana, whilst engaging in private law practice.

Source: www.theheraldghana.com