‘The trust Ghanaians had in Akufo-Addo to fight corruption has dropped’ - GII
Programmes Manager for the Ghana Integrity Initiative (GII), Mrs. Awelana Mary Addah, has in her personal opinion declared that Ghanaians have lost trust in the Nana Addo led administration to fight against corruption.
Maintaining that the view did not represent that of GII, she said it would be better for them to conduct a survey to determine whether Ghanaians had trust in the current administration in the fight against corruption but from her personal view, she believes there was more room for improvement.
That was after the host had asked whether GII as an institution had any responses collated representing the views on Ghanaians to the effect that the corruption fight under President Akufo-Addo was on track.
She said, “the confidence of the government in the fight against corruption under this administration ‘’is half and half’’ meaning, the current administration has done some things and they have not done some things. That is my personal opinion. But if you take the people of Ghana, it would take a survey to tell me that. But the mode is not good for all of us. We have to do more in the fight against corruption.’’
She was speaking in relation to the statement issued by GII on the need for President Akufo-Addo to revoke the appointment of the new Board Chairman of the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA), Kwame Owusu.
According to GII in a statement, his appointment needs to be revoked following the intense public outcry in the pending investigations into allegations of abuse of office and conflict of interest involving Mr. Owusu.
The statement also indicated that if the president was unwilling to revoke his appointment then he should publish the findings on the alleged conflict of interest levelled against Mr. Owusu when he was at the Ghana Maritime Authority.
GII observed in the statement “it is out of place to appoint an individual whose integrity has been questioned to the Board of such a sensitive entity as GRA.”
It said, “however, if the President wants to stand by his decision, then GII calls on him to publish the report of investigations that contradict the allegation of conflict of interest and financial misappropriation made against his appointee.”
According to the statement, “failure by the President to revoke Mr. Kwame Owusu’s appointment or publish the report that clears him will only contribute to negating all the efforts of GRA to promote voluntary compliance of the country’s tax laws and hence leaving the country to mark time at Tax to GDP ratio of 12.6 percent (Ministry of Finance 2018 fiscal data Jan – Dec).”
Mrs. Addah said the confidence Ghanaians had in the current president towards the fight against corruption was high and further made reference to an afrobarometer conducted two years ago.
‘’We are raising these concerns because there was confidence in this government towards the fight against corruption. A global afrobarometer conducted some two years ago showed that Ghanaians were confident in this administration. About 60% of the respondent felt the current president was fulfilling his campaign promise towards the fight against corruption and there was some confidence that the current administration was performing well. However, if we do not take care and fail to fight corruption and turn the fight into a clearing agent, it could come back to hurt us, she argued.