Source: Felicia Osei
The Ministry of Finance has backed claims by the government that the Office of the Special Prosecutor was fully equipped to carry out its anti-corruption fight.
In a letter signed by Secretary to the President, Nana Bediatuo Asante and addressed to former Special Prosecutor, Martin Amidu, the Presidency had stated that contrary to allegations made that the office was not supported, there is evidence to show that Martin Amidu was provided with the necessary financial and administrative support to carry out his work.
Find the full response from the Presidency below:
Backing these claims in a report released by the Finance Ministry and sighted by JoyNews, the Ministry said although resources were made available to the office, they were not used.
According to the report, Mr. Amidu only utilized GH¢129,016,189.52 out of the GH¢322,097,921.40 budgetary allocations made to his office from 2018 to 2020.
“The Office of the Special Prosecutor’s approved ceiling of GH¢180.16m for the year 2019 increased significantly as compared to the revised allocation of GH¢138.14m given for year 2020.
“The year 2018 recorded the lowest allocation of GH¢3.79m and this could be attributed to the fact that the Office had now been established and their allocation formed part of the 2018 budget of the Ministry of Justice and Attorney-General’s Office.
“With regards to releases made to the Office under the various economic classifications, amounts of GH¢154,261.84 and GH¢65,690,067.55 were released as at the end of the 2018 and 2019 fiscal years. Also, an amount of GH¢63,171,860.13 has been released as of 16th November 2020,” part of the Finance Ministry’s report read.
The release of the report follows various allegations by Martin Amidu including a revelation that he and his deputy have not been paid their emoluments since they were appointed.
Mr. Amidu also stated that although he was appointed in 2018, he received his appointment letter in February 2020.
“It is essential for me to state for the purpose of the records, and contrary to public perceptions, that my appointment letter was received on 5th February 2020 (almost two (2)-years after my appointment). The copy addresses made no efforts to honour any of the conditions of appointment in terms of emoluments and benefits of the appointment ever since my warrant of appointment was issued on 23rd February 2018 to the date of my letter of resignation.
“I accepted the offer on 10th January 2018 to be nominated to be Special Prosecutor because Mr. President and Ghanaians knew I have been an anti-corruption crusader all my life and not an anti-corruption entrepreneur. This explains why I have never put the emoluments and benefits of the Office as central to my commitment and my passion for the establishment of an independent, effective, efficient and impartial anti-corruption Office of the Special Prosecutor before the end of the first term of Mr. President. This has not been possible for several reasons.
“The Deputy Special Prosecutor has also not been paid any emoluments since her appointment, and there is the need to redress that situation for her now that I am out of the way,” he said.