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19.03.2009 General News

Corruption is a deep-seated social problem… Says Isaac Osei


MR. ISAAC Osei, the Member of Parliament for Subin has urged Ghanaians to be serious about the implementation of the Ghana Public Procurement Act 663 of 2003.

He said the effective implementation of the law would help avert corruption, which is affecting the development process in the country.

According to the MP, corruption has become a deep-seated social problem since it has taken roots at workplaces, schools, hospitals, police stations and financial Institutions.

In an interview with The Chronicle, Mr. Osei said the diligent implementation of the Procurement Act would help immensely in the crusade against corruption and stressed the need to use it to fight the canker and serve its purpose to the advantage of all Ghanaians.

He noted that there was so much dishonesty and abuse of power by people in positions of authority that the Procurement Act needed to be implemented to the letter, to avoid waste of resources. The former diplomat and anti-corruption campaigner said the move would enable Ghanaians to have value for money, since people would not be deprived of the benefits of the development programmes.

Defining corruption, MP Osei said it is not the act of the policeman collecting some few cedis from the driver along the road, but practices including improper procurement that go to inflate cost of projects.

He noted that by these practices such as pilfering people are deprived of the full benefits of a project, because a project which is not completed on schedule is bound to be stalled due to inflation, depriving the beneficiaries of the full benefits.

The Subin lawmaker has, therefore, assured that he would push for the early passage of the Right to Information Bill since it would enable journalists in particular to access vital information as a weapon to fight corrupt practices in society.

Article 21 (1) (f) of Ghana's 1992 Constitution guarantees the right to information as a fundamental human right that should be protected, promoted and respected.

The Bill, when passed into law, would give the public access to information on government policies and programs, projects and investments, contracts, budgets and decision-making processes and procedures and various aspects of public service delivery.