President Nana Akufo-Addo has sworn in Martin Amidu as Ghana’s first Special Prosecutor.
Mr. Amidu was sworn in today at the Flagstaff House in the presence of the Vice President, Chief of Staff, Attorney General and other government officials.
Swearing him in, President Akufo-Addo reminded Mr Amidu of the high expectations of the citizenry.
“The Ghanaian people expect the office of the Special Prosecutor to rise to the challenge and to the occasion, and collaborate with other existing law enforcement agencies to fight relentlessly and help eliminate corruption in our public life.
“We expect the Special Prosecutor to discharge his duties vigorously with courage without fear or favour, ill will or malice, in accordance with the rule of law,” the President said.
President Akufo-Addo also said the support of Ghanaians and Parliament justified his acceptance of Mr. Amidu for the office.
“The overwhelming popular acceptance by the good people of Ghana and the strong consensus approval by Parliament of Mr. Amidu’s nomination justifies the confidence I repose in him. Indeed, his eloquence and grasp of issues displayed to the public during his recent vetting is further testimony of the soundness of his appointment.”
The former Attorney General received unanimous approval from Parliament earlier this week, despite a pending suit at the Supreme Court over his eligibility for the position.
The Deputy Ranking Member on Constitutional Affairs, Dr. Dominic Ayine, is seeking a declaration that Mr. Amidu, who is 66-years-old, cannot hold public office because he has exceeded the mandated age limit per the 1992 constitution.
In his argument, he said the Office of the Special Prosecutor falls under the broad category of public officers who by the constitution must retire by age 60 with a possible extension to 65 years.
He is seeking declaration that “by a true and proper interpretation of Article 190(1)(d),199(1,)199(4) and 295 of the 1992 Constitution, the retirement age of all holders of public office created pursuant to Article(1)(d) is 60 years, anyhow not beyond (65).”
Martin Amidu was vetted by the Appointments Committee on February 15, 2018, in a sitting that exceeded 7 hours.
Mr. Amidu’s nomination for the position received overwhelming support from the public with many citing his integrity as the most important attribute.
Mr. Amidu, nicknamed the ‘Citizen Vigilante’ for his aggressive approach to corruption was nominated by President Akufo-Addo on January 11, 2018, after an emergency cabinet meeting at the Flagstaff House.
He is a known member of the opposition National Democratic Congress and has been very critical of the Mahama administration because of the perceived tolerance of corruption within that administration.
By ADR Daily Newsdesk