According to Daniel Batidam, Chairperson of the African Union Advisory Board on Corruption, Nana Akufo Addo's plans to establish an independent prosecutor's office may be ad odds with Ghana's constitution.
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Speaking on current affairs program PM Express on Wednesday, Mr. Batidam, who is also President Mahama's advisor on corruption and governance, pointed out that the constitution has already stipulated who it empowers with the authority to conduct criminal investigations, namely the Attorney General.
“Before anybody thinks of creating another office they must bear in mind that the Constitution has prescribed who has the authority to do criminal prosecutions – and that is the Attorney-General.”
“Article 88 is clear about the powers of the Attorney-General and I am not aware of any other body or person that can exercise those powers without touching the constitution,”
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He mentioned that he is of the opinion that establishing an independent prosecutors office would be superfluous. Saying that instead of trying to establish an independent prosecutors office the President Elect should detach the Attorney General's office from the Ministry of Justice. This would allow the Attorney General to be independent, "independent is an English word," said the presidential advisor.
Mr. Batidam said that he does not believe the solution to fighting corruption rested in establishing new institutions, but rather in empowering and resourcing already existing institutions in order for them to carry out their mandate.
He used the example of Martin Amidu, A.K.A. Citizen Vigilante, and his quest to recover GHC51 Million of taxpayer money from businessman and financier, Alfred Woyome.
“Is the vigilante an office? He is not an office. So I think that the institutions are there,” he said