Fighting corruption in Ghana is a solitary job, according to Mary Addah in the OSP-Cecilia Dapaah case
The court’s directive to the Office of the Special Prosecutor to return funds confiscated from the troubled former Sanitation Minister, Cecilia Dapaah, to her has angered the Executive Director of the Ghana Integrity Initiative (GII).
According to Mary Addah, this development shows how difficult it is to tackle corruption in Ghana.
According to her, state institutions must always support the battle against corruption.
On Saturday, September 2, she claimed that the decision was not in the best interests of the nation when speaking on JoyNews’ Newsfile programme.
“This is one of those situations where it’s challenging to understand exactly what’s happening. Fighting corruption continues to be a very solitary endeavour, she told host Samson Lardy. “The Office of the Special Prosecutor is one that will help this country if we want to fight corruption, and we continue to support them to carry out their investigations and prosecutions of corruption and corruption-related offences.
On August 31, the Financial and Economic Division of the Accra High Court issued a directive for the Office of the Special Prosecutor to return all funds confiscated from Cecilia Dapaah, the disgraced former sanitation minister.
The Court ruled that this decision must be followed within seven days. Additionally, the Court stated that it was unable to authenticate the freezing of her bank accounts and other assets.
However, in a statement in reaction to the Court’s order, the OSP stated it respected the instruction but disagreed with it since it was incorrect.
“The OSP disagrees with the Court’s ruling, but it respects the Court’s determination. First, the OSP considers that the Court’s calculation of the time limit is inaccurate.
“Over the course of two (2) weeks, the OSP searched three (3) private homes connected to Ms. Dapaah. During that time, the searches and discoveries were continuous. Once the search and discovery window is taken into account, there is little question that the OSP submitted their application inside the statutory window.
The OSP further stressed that, contrary to what is implied, their decision to freeze the accounts was not motivated by public opinion.
The freeze order was not made in response to popular opinion. Instead, it was based on court documents submitted in a criminal case where Ms. Dapaah was the complainant and was heard by the Circuit Court of Accra. Furthermore, as required by law, the freezing order was implemented to facilitate the inquiry rather than on the basis of the investigation, as the Court suggested. It cannot therefore be claimed that the OSP did not conduct adequate investigations to support the freezing order. The investigation just got started, and it’s still going.
Following the discovery that Madam Dapaah was keeping more than $1 million in her home, the OSP opened a corruption and corruption-related offence investigation into her.