Accra, Aug. 16, GNA – Civil Society Organisations (CSO’s) have declared support for the setting up of the Office of Special Prosecutor, but have, however, expressed concern that the process for its establishment may take too long.
They have also noted with concern what they describe as the ambiguity in the detailing of the draft legislation on how the Office would deal with corruption, particularly those involving public office holders.
The CSO’s expressed these sentiments when they met with President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo at the Flagstaff House in Accra on Wednesday.
Professor Emmanuel Gyima-Boadi, the Executive Director of the Centre for Democratic Development (CDD), who led the delegation of CSO’s, said although they endorsed the setting up of the Special Prosecutor’s Office, there should be a clear path of action from government in dealing with issues on corruption.
He said because the process for its establishment may take some time, there should be a two-pronged approach; a Parliamentary Act in the short term, and a Constitutional Act in the long term to give backing to the work of the Office.
Prof. Gyima-Boadi suggested that the President should, in the interim, appoint a focal person on anti corruption and good governance, stressing on the need for Government to give a roadmap to fight corruption pending the establishment of the Office.
He said the Law on the Declaration of Assets must be expanded to cover all categories of political appointees, adding that the fight against corruption would be enhanced when all public officials made their assets known for transparency and accountability.
‘We maintain that all declarations need to be made fully public,’ he said.
Prof.Gyima-Boadi expressed worry about the lack of action on the part of government on some reported cases of corruption, adding that the public were eager to have the President make good on his word to deal with corruption.
He said he was worried, also, about the delay in the passage of the Right to Information Bill and called on President Akufo-Addo to hasten to ensure it comes into fruition as promised before last year’s election.
President Akufo-Addo, on his part, applauded the untiring efforts of the CSO’s at promoting good governance and assured them that their valuable inputs would be brought to bear on the processes to make the nation a better place.
‘We have an opportunity to build a much stronger, a more durable system of governance, which, hopefully, will translate into also dealing with the issues of poverty in our country…..and build a society where the young Ghanaian can see his future here in Ghana and put his energies, creativity, sense of enterprise in that undertaking,’ he said.
‘….I have the authority to carry out my beliefs and my programmes within the context of the mandate that the Ghanaian people gave me on 7th December,’ he said.
Other members of the delegation included Dr Emmanuel Akwettey, the Executive Director of the Institute of Democratic Governance, Mr Franklin Cudjoe, President of Imani Ghana, and Dr Steve Manteaw, the Executive Director of ISODEC.
By Ken Sackey, GNA