Kwesi Pratt Jnr, Managing Editor of the Insight newspaper has asked President John Dramani Mahama, to take immediate steps to halt the corruption sweeping through the Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) ‘like a wild fire’.
“It is being done and it is so bad…government workers are able to dip their hands into state coffers without any remorse. Managers of state enterprises, agencies and departments have become commissioned agents of the banks in addition to their duties. They take their salaries from the state and also take commissions from the banks…this is a very very dirty corrupt act…”
He advised government to ensure that its account stays with State Banks to avoid government funds going into individual pockets.
Friday’s edition of the Insight newspaper highlighted how the canker seems to have gained roots among officials at these MDAs. The paper said: “This new kind of approved corruption has its roots in the competition amongst the various banks for cash deposits. The first banks which introduced the system were mainly foreign but it has now grown to the extent that even some state owned banks have also started doing the same. It works in a very simple way.
“Managers who remove the accounts of their departments or agencies to the banks operating the system are paid a certain percentage of accrued interest by the banks. The effect is that managers of state enterprises, agencies and departments h ave become commissioned agents of the banks in addition to their duties.
“They take their salaries from the state and also take commissions from the banks.
“There are reports of some taking their accounts from state owned banks like the Ghana Commercial Bank and the Agricultural Development Bank to privately owned banks. Through this practice, managers of state institutions rather than helping to promote the interest of the state are busily subverting other state institutions”.
Speaking as a panelist on Kokrokoo, a flagship programme on Peace FM, hosted by Kwami Sefa-Kayi, Kwesi Pratt said the practice whereby a managing director of a government institute to open a government account and receive commission should not be countenanced.
“Government needs to do something about it. First of all, everybody who has gone for that commission must return the money. Government must institute clear policies on the movement of government funds from different banks. It doesn’t provide any stability in the economy. It’s a major problem. My worry is that it is now becoming acceptable…” he added.