President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has said despite the alleged slow prosecution of corrupt officials, he will not under any circumstances truncate the due process of law of those facing trial at the country’s court for political expediency.
Speaking with the Ghanaian community in Canada on Sunday as part of his visit to the country, President Akufo-Addo said it would be unfair on his part, where for political reasons, due process is denied some people but applied to others.
He insisted that he, “will never, ever preside over Ghanaian jurisprudence” that discriminates against sections of Ghanaians.
“I’m not prepared to do, under any condition, away with due process, I’m not. I fought for it all of my life in Ghana that we will have a state in Ghana which recognises and accepts and acknowledges due process as a fundamental instrument of state policy.”
The President said the Minister of Justice and Attorney-General, Gloria Akuffo had not been idle, as currently, there were 21 persons facing trails on corrupt practices.
“If somebody is sent to court, and that person continues to make application upon application, whether it is to delay the process or that the applications are genuine, we have to recognise his or her right to do it. And it is when those are exhausted, that the trail can begin.”
“Some of the trials have started and the process ongoing, President Akufo-Addo retorted, adding: “let us accept the judicial process as it is, work with it, knowing fully well that if tomorrow you’re in trouble, you’ll also like to have due process applied to you,” President Akufo-Addo resorted.
He said a lot was being done, acknowledging that much more could be done and soon a lot of corrupt cases will be made public.
President Akufo-Addo said some persons have alleged that he has soften his stance on prosecuting corrupt officials because he is corrupt, himself.
“That’s one thousand percent away from the truth, I’m recognising the laws of our country and making sure those who are brought to court are given the proper treatment by the courts and at the end of the day, justice will be done to them and to the people of Ghana,” he underscored.
Responding to a question posed to him about the perennial flooding in Accra, President Akufo-Addo said major issues confronting the nation has to be the antiquated drainage system, especially in Accra.
“The drainage creates a big problem for us any time the rains comes. It’s a big problem for us, and for years it’s been neglected. We’ve decided to do something about it but the cost to fix it is huge.
“Dredging of the Odaw river, as I visited the other day, cost US$67 million, it’s a lot of money which we have to do it if we going to keep the flow of water from over flooding.”
The President said, in as much as Ghanaians talk about the country’s infrastructure, “we must also talk about the habits of the Ghanaian.”
“We have a situation in our country, time and again, we want this we want that but the attitudinal change of the Ghanaian that will enable us to be able to bring value to this demands, is always left out.”
“Up to today while the Odaw River is being dredged, there are still people at home, and when the rains come, the easiest way to deal with their cabbage is to throw it out into the gutters, and drains. Those things will have to come to a stop.”
He urged Ghanaians including those in the diaspora to bring those habits to a stop, “because if we don’t, no matter the investment that we make, at the end of the day we will be back to the square one and I ‘m not prepared to spend your money in that way again.”