Special Prosecutor must help root out corruption

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The British High Commissioner, Iain Walker has noted the recent corruption perception index on the country is likely to affect investor confidence that is why the swearing in of the Special Prosecutor last Friday by the President before travelling abroad is a landmark.

The setting up of the office of the Special Prosecutor was one of the key campaign promises made by President Akufo-Addo ahead of his election victory in 2016, and it is aimed at tackling corruption effectively.

The office of the Special Prosecutor has the mandate to investigate and prosecute cases of alleged corruption under the Public Procurement Act 203 Act 63 and other corruption-related offences implicating public officers, political office holders and their accomplices in the public sector.

The Ghanaian people, he said, expect the office of the Special Prosecutor to rise to the challenge and to the occasion, collaborating with other existing law enforcement agencies to fight “relentlessly and help eliminate corruption in our public life.”

After what can arguably be said to be his sterling performance at the Parliamentary vetting exercise, it was only the formality of the President swearing-in Martin Amidu into office that was left before the Office of the Special Prosecutor becomes fully functional.

The independence of the Special Prosecutor insulates it from any form of interference, be it from the Executive, or any other organ of state. It is pleasing, however, that the President cautioned Mr. Amidu to not let personal vendetta get the better of him because it would mar the significance of the office, and he may be seen not to be carrying out his functions in a professional manner.

It is significant because there should not be any perception of witch-hunting from any quarter because of the opposition his nomination elicited from the main opposition party which he is a founding member but fell out with party members over issues that border on perceived corruption.

One thing is clear though. Amidu is an avowed anti-corruption crusader and he doesn’t care whose axe is gored. The man will perform the role to the best of his ability and that is what Ghanaians require in a Special Prosecutor.

With Amidu at post, every public official will be looking over his/her shoulder, and that is precisely what President Akufo-Addo wants: Someone who will instill the fear of God in would-be corrupt people.

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