President Nana Akufo-Addo has said his government will “never ever” circumvent due process in the judicial system to jail people for corruption just because some people are clamouring for it.
The president told the Ghanaian community in Toronto, Canada that 21 people are currently standing trial for corruption, adding that he will make sure the judicial system gives all of them a fair hearing.
“People are saying there are no prosecutions. Twenty-one people are on trial in Ghana today for corruption. Corruption, what does it mean? The simple word for corruption is stealing, it’s theft and there are people on trial as I speak today.
“One of the things that I am not prepared to do under any conditions is to do away with due process. I fought for it all my life in Ghana that we will have a State in Ghana which recognises and accepts and acknowledges due process as a fundamental instrument of state policy”, the president said.
“So, putting somebody before the court and that person is making application after application – whether it is to delay the process or whether the applications are genuine – you have to recognise his right to do it.
“And it is when those are exhausted that the trial can begin.
“Some of the trials have started. Those that were started, efforts were made to stymy them by going to the Supreme Court, the Supreme Court dismissed those efforts and the process is ongoing.
“Let us accept the judicial process as it is, work with it, knowing fully well that if tomorrow you are in trouble, you will also love to have due process apply to you.
“We’re not going to have a situation where, for political reasons, due process is denied some people but applied to other people.
“I will never ever preside over that kind of discrimination. So, a lot is being done, much more can be done, and much more is going to be made public to you in the not-too-distant future”, the president said.