Monday, 22 January 2018
Amidu, the  special one

Amidu, the special one

-To prosecute anti-graft agenda – President

By Daniel NONOR, Flagstaff House
The President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, has fired his best shot yet at the fight against corruption by nominating a former Attorney-General in the National Democratic Congress administration, who is also a known anti-corruption crusader, Martin Alamisi Amidu, as the Special Prosecutor.

Mr Amidu’s nomination, according to the President, is a response to the stench of corruption in public life and the growing demand for the creation of additional, focused instruments to fight the canker.
“The response of the New Patriotic Party to this demand was, inter alia, to pledge, in its manifesto for the 2016 general elections, the establishment of the Office of Special Prosecutor, an independent, non-partisan body with the relevant professional capability to lead the fight and hold public officials, past and present, accountable for their stewardship of public finances,” the President noted.
The President, announcing the nomination at the seat of government in Accra yesterday, reposed great confidence in the capabilities of Mr Amidu to discharge his mandate creditably.
“I am fully convinced that Mr Martin Amidu, a prominent legal personality who held the high office of the Attorney-General of the Republic in the government of the late President John Evans Atta Mills, has the requisite integrity, competence, courage and independence of character to discharge effectively the responsibilities of this office.”
The enactment of the Office of Special Prosecutor Act, Act 663, 2018, according to the President, is the first stage in the fulfilment of his resolve to tackle corruption head on.
“Satisfied of the constitutionality and propriety of the legislation, I assented to it on January 2, 2018”, he noted.
The act, pursuant to s.13(3), provides for the nomination by the Attorney-General of a person fit for appointment by the President of the Republic, subject to approval by Parliament by an absolute majority of its members to perform the functions of the office. The Special Prosecutor, once confirmed by Parliament, will carry an extraordinary responsibility, independently and impartially, to fight corruption.
The President recounted several cases in which the nominee gave good account of himself in the fight against corruption.
“Indeed, the Supreme Court itself has had cause to commend the nominee for his public spiritedness in the case of Amidu vrs Attorney-General, Waterville & Woyome [2013-2014] 1 SCGLR 112 @ 166, when the court, per the respected judge, Dotse JSC, had this to say about him: ‘…The role of the plaintiff, Martin Alamisi Amidu, a distinguished former Attorney-General of this country, needs to be highly commended as was done in the lead judgement of the court. The plaintiff, in my opinion, must be highly commended for his vigilante role in protecting the wanton dissipation of the public purse…’ The court also, in a related suit, had this to say about the nominee: “…the plaintiff (that is to say Mr Amidu) is to be commended for his public spiritedness which has fuelled his meticulous and industrious presentation of this case…’”
Mr Amidu made the headlines in 2012 when he was relieved of his post as Attorney-General by then President Mills under very strange circumstances.
The letter relieving Mr Amidu of his position noted that his [Mr Amidu’s] behaviour at the meeting was “incompatible with acceptable standards” of a Minister and appointee of the President.
Mr Amidu had vehemently denied this claim by emphasising severally that he tended in his resignation before the announcement of his sack.
It latter emerged that Mr Amidu had insisted that former Attorney-General Mrs Mould-Iddrisu and Barton Odro and others allegedly involved in the Woyome scandal be prosecuted, an idea that didn’t sit well with the powers that be at the time.
Mr Amidu had since that incident become the toast of many in his fearless fight against corruption in the country.

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