Senior Vice President of IMANI Ghana, Kofi Benti says the legacy of President Akufo-Addo in the fight against corruption will be terrible.

The private legal practitioner explained that it is because Ghana has failed abysmally in fighting corruption in the last few years.

He attributed the failure to the high expectations electorate had in then New Patriotic Party (NPP) presidential candidate Nana Akufo-Addo to fight corruption.

“… It’s on the background on someone like the President whom we believe for many reasons will fight corruption. For many reasons, we cannot cite him at least in his previous political life as somebody who was corrupt. He said he is not corrupt, we believed him. He said he was going to use the Anas principle, we believed him, and so many things which gave us hope that this was going to be a presidency that will fight corruption.

“Indeed, when President Kufuor declared zero tolerance for corruption, some people laughed but when this President said he was going to fight corruption, we actually did believe him. So maybe the expectations were quite high and unfortunately, the performance was abysmal,” he stressed.

Speaking on JoyNews’ Newsfile on Saturday, he explained that although the President is not in charge of convicting corruption cases, “the signalling from this presidency and president has been very bad.”

“Indeed although he is not the one to convict people who are corrupt or whatever, he is also not the one to be clearing them. Making pronouncements about people who are under investigation. That really was terrible,” he told host Samson Lardy Anyenini.

President Akufo-Addo at an event to mark World Corruption Day stated that his administration has undertaken “arguably” the boldest steps in dealing with corruption since Ghana attained independence nearly 65 years ago.

According to him, all allegations of corruption levelled against his appointees so far, have been probed.

“My job is to act on allegations of corruption by referring the issue to the proper investigative agencies for the relevant inquiry and necessary actions including if required, the suspension of the affected official pending the conclusion of the investigation. That is exactly what has been done since I assumed the mantle of national leadership,” he said.

But Kofi Bentil expects more.

He said it is required of the President by leadership to make the right selection in his appointments, adding that judgment awaits him “based on the people you surround yourself with.”

“This is a President who appointed somebody to the Procurement Agency who was implicated in very serious corruption…. if you consistently are found to be appointing people found to be corrupt in very grievous ways right around you, it reflects on you so it’s unfortunate but we have to say that the legacy of this President when it comes to fighting corruption will be terrible and we need to say t as it is because we don’t have to repeat these things,” he pointed out.

Mr Bentil insisted that the President “ought to have done due diligence” in his appointment to avoid such cases of corruption schemes being reflected on him.

With all these issues arising, he noted that “the actions and utterances of this President do not bear out the trust we[Ghanaians] held in him [President] as somebody who was going to fight corruption.”

He added that “it is particularly disappointing because he came in with very high credentials and we thought that this was our hope that somebody was going to really stand up and fight corruption.”



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