Ghana’s Special Prosecutor tasked to deal with corruption, has accused government officials of stifling his effort to fight corruption.
Martin Amidu was sworn in as Ghana’s first Special Prosecutor by the country’s President Akufo-Addo in February this year.
His major tasks include leading government’s fight against corruption and holding public officials, past and present accountable for their stewardship of public finances.
There were high expectations for Amidu’s job but he is accusing some appointees of Mr. Akufo-Addo of refusing him critical documents needed to deliver on his mandate.
At a recent forum in Ghana’s capital Accra Mr. Amidu said “You ask for information you can’t get it, you ask for docket, the docket cannot be produced. You ask a minister for a record, the record cannot be produced.”
“How do you fight corruption when those appointed by the president who has a vision are not coordinating with the office of the special prosecutor to achieve his mandate? That is the challenge we have to face,” Mr Amidu said.
The special prosecutor added that due to logistical challenges, including the unavailability of the necessary legislative instruments to function he is compelled to use his “common sense.”
Ghana’s Attorney General and Minister of Justice, Gloria Akuffo has responded to the claims saying “That’s not the case”.
Ms. Akuffo told Accra based Starr FM that the claims by the Special Prosecutor were inaccurate.
She said since the swearing in of Mr. Amidu as Ghana’s first Special Prosecutor, she has had several meetings with him to share ideas on investigative strategy.
“We have shared ideas about how we should go about investigating and prosecuting it [corruption cases], there’s no time that he had sought to speak with me that I haven’t spoken to him,” said Ms. Akuffo.
Ms. Akuffo said she was shocked by the claims made by Mr Amidu as “there’s no breakdown” in communication.
Section of the Ghanaian public since Mr Amidu’s public disclosure of his frustration criticized the government for doing little to resource his office.
Speaking to Ghanaians in the US, President Akufo-Addo assured that the Special Prosecutor’s will be resourced to effectively carried its mandate.
“Very soon all of you will see the office is functional,” he said.