The Special Prosecutor nominee, Kissi Agyebeng, has said it will not be possible for him to stop corruption in Ghana, saying he can rather make it very costly to engage in.
The seasoned lawyer who stated this during his vetting in Parliament on Thursday, July 22, 2021, assured he would rather put in place the right systems that will help check corruption in the country.
Throwing more light on his approach, Agyebeng said “I am not naive to assume that I am coming to stop corruption. There’s no way I can stop corruption. God himself will not acclaim to that but, I am going to make corruption very costly to engage in.”
“First, I am going to institute what I call ‘Pressure for Progress’ and in this quest, there will be a systemic review of all public sector institutions and the development of integrity plans.”
Mr. Agyebeng, a law lecturer and private legal practitioner, is to replace Martin Amidu, who resigned from the position in November 2020 under very controversial circumstances.
Many believe he will be manipulated by the Akufo-Addo government, especially when Amidu noted he was pressurized to do certain things.
But Agyebeng says he will not be anyone’s surrogate.
He said he would consider leaving the job if he’s faced with challenges that are “unbearable” although his first inclination will be to “persevere along” amid difficult times.
“My first inclination will be to persevere along because that is my calling and oath that I have sworn. Unless it becomes so unbearable, then I will say, the Republic should take its job. But I am not that kind of person. I am not predisposed to that kind of open confrontation,” he said this during his vetting in Parliament on Thursday, July 22, 2021, when he asked about what his reaction would be should he be confronted with the problems his predecessor faced.
Attorney-General and Minister for Justice, Godfred Yeboah Dame, nominated Kissi Agyebeng as a replacement for Martin Amidu, this year.
Who is Agyebeng?
Kissi Agyebeng was called to the Ghana Bar in October 2003 and holds a Bachelor of Laws (LLB) degree from the University of Ghana, as well as, Master of Laws (LLM) degrees from Schulich School of Law, Dalhousie University, Canada, and Cornell Law School, USA.
Agyebeng since 2006 has been teaching Criminal Law at the University of Ghana, whilst engaging in private law practice.
He is the Chairman of the Electronic Communications Tribunal, the body that determines appeals from parties aggrieved by the National Communications Authority’s (NCA) decisions on issues such as the closure of radio stations.
He is the Managing Partner of Cromwell Gray LLP, a law firm based in Accra.
The mandate of the Special Prosecutor
The Office of the Special Prosecutor (OSP) has the mandate to investigate and prosecute all suspected corruption and corruption-related offenses as pertaining to public officers, politically exposed persons, and persons in the private sector alleged to have been involved in any corruption and corruption-related offenses.
Apart from initiating investigations on its own, Act 959 gives the OSP the power to receive and investigate complaints of alleged corruption from the public or investigate suspected corruption or corruption-related offenses upon referral from public bodies such the A-G’s Department, the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ) and the Economic and Organised Crime Office (EOCO).