A Coalition of civil society organisations (CSOs) championing the fight against corruption, has called on President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo to reconsider the decision to force the Auditor-General (AG) to take his ‘accumulated leave’.
The CSOs coalition included: the Ghana Centre for Democratic Development (CDD-Ghana), SEND-Ghana, Ghana Anti-Corruption Coalition (GACC), Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative (CHRI), Ghana Integrity Initiative (GII), Citizens’ Movement Against Corruption (CMaC) and Institute for Democratic Governance (IDEG).
The CSOs Coalition, at a news conference in Accra, claimed that the action weakened the President’s fight against corruption and standing in the eyes of the international community as someone committed to public accountability.
Dr Kojo Asante, Director of Advocacy and Policy Engagement at CDD-Ghana, who read the statement on behalf of the CSOs Coalition said it was important to note that the issue with the AG was not an isolated event but part of an ongoing tussle between the AG and the Audit Service Board led by its Chairman Mr Edward Dua Agyemang.
He said that some aspects of the decision of the President on the face of it may be grounded in law, however, when examined overall in the context of the 1992 Constitution, particularly in relation to the independence of the AG, it interfered with the mandate of the AG.
Dr Asante stated that it was curious that a small matter of managing annual leave had escalated to that level.
He said, the context showed that the administration of leave was added to the basket of actions and inactions being contested by the Audit Service Board.
“For many public and private institutions this is handled by a Human Resource (HR) Manager and often does not lead to directing a person to forcibly take their leave”, he added.
He said since Mr Domelevo took office, he had shown exemplary leadership in terms of accountability, sacrifices and effectiveness in the way a public sector organisation was managed.
“He has shown leadership and has been extremely productive, his achievements are there for all to see; we need more of such men and women, unfortunately, many of them have to fight this battle alone and often they lose out”, he added.
Dr Asante noted that the action (the decision to force the AG to take his ‘accumulated leave’), was a huge discouragement to public office holders who desired to stand up and be counted.
“Mr Domelevo is the same AG who upon the assumption into office of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) Government in 2017 conducted an audit of the liabilities accrued by Ministries, Departments, and Agencies (MDAs) in 2016,” he said.
Dr Asante recounted that this was during the tenure of former President John Dramani Mahama who appointed him. The AG disallowed as much as GHC5.4billion; saving the country a lot of money.
Dr Asante the CSOs were calling on all well-meaning Ghanaians to join them in their campaign to #BringBackDomelevo.