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Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) including the Center for Democratic Governance (CDD-Ghana), Ghana Anti-corruption Coalition (GACC) and the Ghana Integrity Initiative (GII) – anti-corruption campaigners, have engaged with state-owned anti-corruption agencies to deliberate on issues of corruption and how to tackle them.
The forum funded by Star-Ghana provided an opportunity for state-owned anti-corruption bodies to engage the public to account for their stewardship and strengthen inter-agency synergies.
Addressing participants, the Executive Director of Afrobarometer at CDD-Ghana, Prof. Gyimah-Boadi, indicated that for the past 16-years the forum has been extremely helpful to the overall prosecution of national anti-corruption and accountability governance agenda.
“They helped to foster the anti-corruption agencies’ mutual appreciation of their respective institutional and political challenges and as well facilitate identification to areas of possible cooperation and reduction of duplication,” he stated.
He reiterated that the platform further provides opportunities to the same anti-corruption agencies to enlist the support of the public, CSOs and the media to undertake advocacy programmes.
Prof. Gyimah-Boadi noted that the newly designed forum would enable officials, non-state anti-corruption agencies and stakeholders to come together and identify common challenges, discover synergies and promote appropriate reforms and also devise strategies for advocacy and improve the levels on anti-corruption work.
Speakers for the state-owned anti-corruption agencies included the Commissioner of CHRAJ, the Auditor-General and the Director of Financial Intelligence Center (FIC).
They appreciated the idea behind the engagement on how to address corruption-related issues. They called for constitutional reforms and amendment of the laws to allow for properly prosecution and conviction of corrupt officials.
The CHRAJ Commissioner, Joseph Whittal explained that corruption issues must not be seen as only criminal just to prosecute and convict the perpetrator but the non-conviction basis must be added to the law to empower the institutions to confiscate the properties even before prosecution starts.
He said such institutions must be given the mandate to freeze and confiscate corruption related properties as a form of assets recovery for the state before addressing the prosecution process.
Source: Nii Aflah Sackey