Martin Amidu Faces Appointments Committee On February 13
The President’s nominee for the Office of the Special Prosecutor, Martin Amidu, will be vetted on Tuesday, February 13, 2018, Citi News has learnt.
The Speaker of Parliament, Prof. Mike Oquaye, last week referred the President’s nominee to the Appointments Committee of the House for consideration and vetting.
President Akufo-Addo nominated Martin Amidu to the Office of the Special Prosecutor earlier this month, with a charge to him to deal with public sector corruption.
The nomination of the Former Attorney General was met with wide acceptance from the public.
Ghana’s first President in the Fourth Republic, Jerry John Rawlings, commended the appointment, describing Martin Amidu as “fearless.”
Mr. Rawlings said President Nana Akufo-Addo had “risen above partisanship and recognized a highly principled citizen.”
Ghanaians took to social media to commend the President for his selection of the ‘Citizen Vigilante’ to head the Office.
His appointment has also been described as the “most objective political appointment” in the Fourth Republic.
Amidu’s contempt for corruption and governments he felt were condoning corrupt acts has been well publicized.
His pursuit of businessman Alfred Woyome in order to ensure the retrieval of monies wrongfully paid him by the state has attained widespread public praise.
Amidu was also an ardent critic of the NDC government, and he boldly asked Ghanaians to vote against them in the last election after he described them as corrupt.
In one of his epistles critiquing the Special Prosecutor Bill before it became law, the Former Attorney General explained that whoever is appointed as the Special Public Prosecutor will not need parliamentary approval.
He said “the Constitution has clearly delineated the type of public officers who shall be appointed by the President with the approval of Parliament. Public officers in the category of the Special Prosecutor do not fall under that category and it is unconstitutional for Parliament to partake in the unitary and exclusive appointment powers of the President.”
It is thus unclear whether he will allow himself to go through that parliamentary process, now that he has been appointed.
About Special Prosecutor office
President Akufo-Addo signed into law, the Bill setting up the Special Prosecutor office after it was approved by Parliament in November 2017.
The Office of the Special Prosecutor marks the fulfilment of a major campaign promise of Nana Akufo-Addo in the run-up to the 2016 elections as part of efforts to fight corruption.
But members of the opposition NDC had complained that the office cannot be independent if the Special Prosecutor was going to be a loyalist of the NPP.
The President in announcing Amidu, said he received the nomination from the Attorney General Gloria Akuffo, and accepted the nominee.
“The Attorney General is by a letter dated to me Thursday 11th January 2018 addressed to me exercised her power of nomination and submitted to me for my acceptance the name of the proposed special prosecutor. I have accepted the Attorney General’s nomination and will, in turn, submit for Parliament’s approval when it reconvenes on 23rd of January 2018 for its first meeting of this New Year the name of Martin Alamisi Benz Kaiser Amidu to be the first Special Prosecutor under the law,” he said.
The President noted that, Mr. Amidu has the requisite integrity and independence of character to occupy such challenging office.
“I have done so because 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 Attah Mills has the requisite integrity, competence, courage and independence of character to discharge effectively the responsibilities of this office.”