Pratt Hails President’s Directive On A-G’s Report, But…

Kwesi Pratt JnrThe Managing Editor of the Insight Newspaper, Kwesi Pratt Jnr. is in support with President John Mahama’s directive to investigate and prosecute all offenders captured by the Auditor-General for squandering state funds and assets.

According to him, the choice of the President to direct the Attorney-General and Minister of Justice to set up a special desk to prosecute those offenders was not constitutionally mandatory since the Chief Justice and Parliament were obliged to do so by the constitution.
He wondered why the Financial Tribunal had not been established over the years though it was constitutionally required.

“What the President said is good but by our 1992 Constitution, there is a provision we must work with. If you look at the constitution, it is the duty of Parliament and the Chief Justice to set a financial tribunal to fight these kind of cases and if offenders are found guilty by the Auditor-General for disbursing state funds they will be prosecuted.

“…what we must ask is that, why for all these years, since 1992, the financial tribunal has not been established to function. What is preventing us from establishing what the Constitution demands?

That is what we have to talk about. We agree with what the President said but the question is when will government see to it that the financial tribunal is established to prosecute offenders, he questioned.”
President John Mahama has directed the Attorney-General and Minister of Justice to set up a special desk to investigate and prosecute all offenders captured in the reports of the Auditor General concerning squandered state funds and assets.

President Mahama said the directive and its implementation was part of efforts toward forestalling corruption in public offices and believed that would  send a strong warning to public officials that “they cannot abuse state finances and resources and go scot free”.
But speaking on Peace FMs “Kokrokoo” programme, Mr. Pratt said, the Auditor General’s report had become mere paper work as the same discrepancies in the annual report kept recurring.

He however said the picture being painted was that civil servants and politicians could loot all they  could from state coffers since no law could bite, and  strongly believed that the time for the establishment of a financial tribunal to handle such matters as provided for in the Constitution was long overdue.

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