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16.07.2019 Feature Article

Why Obama may be wrong: Africa cannot do without the likes of Amidu and Agyapong

Why Obama may be wrong: Africa cannot do without the likes of Amidu and Agyapong
JUL 16, 2019 FEATURE ARTICLE

In the wake of the Supreme Court’s orders to the Government of Ghana to sell the identified properties of the embattled Woyome to defray the dubious GH51.2 million doled to him by the erstwhile NDC administration, we hereby beseech the powers that be to bestow high praise on the MP for Assin Central, the Honourable Kennedy Agyapong and Mr Martin Amidu, the current Special Prosecutor, for their unparalleled sense of patriotism and solicitude.

Absolutely, we owe a great deal of gratitude to the Honourable Agyapong and Mr Martin Amidu for persistently exposing and confronting corrupt public officials.

“The notion that a radical is one who hates his country is naïve and usually idiotic. He is, more likely, one who likes his country more than the rest of us, and is thus more disturbed than the rest of us when he sees it debauched. He is not a bad citizen turning to crime; he is a good citizen driven to despair (H. L. Mencken).”

I must confess though, it is because of courageous and patriotic individuals like the Honourable Kennedy Agyapong and Mr Martin Amidu that I have humbly refused to buy President Obama’s assertion that ‘Africa needs strong institutions, but not strong men’.

To me, President Obama’s observation appears somewhat sophistic. Yes, President Obama is absolutely right that Africa needs strong institutions. However, I hold a firm conviction that Africa cannot do away with ‘strong men’ like the Honourable Kennedy Agyapong and the Special Prosecutor, Mr Martin Amidu in our attempts to strengthen the ever so weak institutions.

Let us, therefore, admit, without courageous and strong men like the Honourable Agyapong and Mr Martin Amidu, Africa cannot build strong institutions.

Of course, the unrepentant critics of the Honourable Kennedy Agyapong and Mr Martin Amidu may have a point for insisting that they more often than not go overboard in their attempts to expose the nation wreckers.

But that said, their approach does not make any of them a bad person or “a Lucifer in the flesh”, rather, the Honourable Agyapong and Mr Martin Amidu are certified valiant patriots, who have time and time again shown their affection, solicitude and strong predilection towards the wellbeing of Ghana.

After all, we are all susceptible to human foibles or have defects in our characters, so why must we hastily pass judgement on others attitudes and behaviours?

Truly, the Honourable Agyapong and Mr Martin Amidu are unwearied corruption crusaders who have consistently upheld the relevant provisions of the United Nations 2005 Convention against Corruption. They have inexorably exposed corrupt public officials, so to speak.

If you may remember, it was the Honourable Kennedy Agyapong who blew the whistle over the dubious GH51.2 million Woyome’s judgement debt payment.

Then the citizen vigilante, Martin Amidu, single handedly fought the case at the Supreme Court and won a landmark victory over Woyome.

Take, for example, a couple of years ago, the Honourable Agyapong came out and told Ghanaians that former President Mahama’s brother, Ibrahim Mahama, had been evading import taxes over the past few years.

He was however scoffed at, and queried repeatedly about the veracity of the seeming chilling story. But alas, he was proved right.

Consequently, the EOCO ordered Ibrahim Mahama to pay GH12.7million, as all his previous 44 cheques were dishonoured by the respective banks. How bizarre?

The Honourable Kennedy Agyapong and Mr Martin Amidu, like some of us, cannot comprehend how and why the people we entrust with the national coffers could team up with shifty individuals and steal gargantuan sums of money belonging to the nation at the detriment of the poor and the disadvantaged.

In spite of the fact that corruption is a serious economic, social, political and moral impediment to the nation building, some corrupt officials are bent on siphoning our scarce resources at the expense of the poor and the disadvantaged Ghanaians.

As a matter of fact and observation, corruption impedes economic development by distorting markets and collapsing private sector integrity.

“Corruption also strikes at the heart of democracy by corroding rule of law, democratic institutions and public trust in leaders. For the poor, women and minorities, corruption means even less access to jobs, justice or any fair and equal opportunity” (UNDP 2016).

To me, a fantastically corrupt public servant is no less a human rights violator than the enigmatic Adolf Hitler.

This is because, whilst Adolf Hitler went into a conniption-fit, and barbarically exterminated innocent people with lethal chemicals and sophisticated weapons, a contemporary corrupt public servant is blissfully bent on annihilating innocent citizens through wanton bribery and corruption.

Consequently, the innocent citizens would often end up experiencing economic hardships, starvation, depression, emotional labour and squalor which send them to their early graves.

In sum, some of us, as a matter of principle, will continue to hold the fearless patriots like the Honourable Kennedy Agyapong and Mr Martin Amidu in high esteem, for putting their precious lives on the line to trail and expose the enemies of the state.

K. Badu, UK.
[email protected]

Kwaku Badu
Kwaku Badu, © 2019

This author has authored 792 publications on Modern Ghana. Author column: KwakuBadu

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