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Lack of political will hindering corruption fight

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A Supreme Court Justice, Yaw Appau, says the fight against corruption by successive governments has failed due to the lack of political will to fight the canker.

The ruling government has come under heavy criticism for failing to deal with corruption, particularly following the resignation of Martin Amidu as Special Prosecutor and the retiring of Auditor General, Daniel Yaw Domelevo.

Speaking at a Leadership Dialogue series by the Centre for Social Justice, Justice Appau said successive governments have failed at eradicating the canker because of the lack of interest in leaders to prosecute offenders.

“We have gone through numerous workshops and seminars on what public sector and political corruption is. Why are we not, therefore, addressing it, or why can’t we address it? The answer is simple; poverty of leadership and the lack of political will”, he said.

Despite the backlash, the President, Nana Akufo-Addo, has said he is satisfied with the effectiveness of his government’s anti-corruption fight, adding that there is evidence to this performance.

For him, Ghana’s improved ranking on global corruption indexes is a testament to how well the government has performed.

Speaking in an interview with CNN, President Akufo-Addo said since his government came to power, Ghana’s anti-corruption ranking has “gone up several notches.”

“Am I satisfied that we’ve been effective? I will say yes. A lot has been done, and it is reflected in Ghana’s growing position and rankings of corruption in the world. We’ve gone up several notches since I came into office because we are dealing with these matters at the basic level,” he said.

Nana Akufo-Addo said anti-corruption institutions in the country were poorly resourced at the time he took over office in 2017, however, he has ensured that they are adequately resourced to work.

He said his action goes beyond making “wonderful statements” to actually making efforts to ensure that the tools needed by anti-corruption agencies are provided to ensure that they work efficiently.

“For the anti-corruption institutions of our country, when I came into office, [they] were very poorly resourced. We can talk all we like about corruption and make all the wonderful statements but if the instruments at your disposal for dealing with it are weak and blunt, you will get no result,” he said.

 

 

Asked about the exit of Daniel Domelevo from office as the Auditor-General, the president said he did not force Mr. Domelevo to leave office.

He said Domelevo’s exit was purely on the grounds that he had attained the retirement age and was due to retire.

Akufo-Addo further said he believes Mr. Domelevo should be open and eager to ensure that the country’s law on retirement is obeyed.

“There’s a time for retiring which is prescribed by statute, not my making. If you are 60 years old you are no longer supposed to be able to work in the public service. The Auditor-General, like me, should be some of the first to recognize the laws in our country,” he added.

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