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Special Prosecutor, Kissi Agyebeng, says the 2022 budget allocation to his office is below his expectation, as that is not enough to fund the numerous ideas and projects the Office has in mind.
According to Mr. Agyebeng, though he will not give up due to challenges with funding, under-resourcing is a major obstacle to the corruption fight.
“Without money, we can’t do anything. We will be reduced to writing long letters without any force,” he warned.
Speaking at a press conference to commemorate international anti-corruption day, he explained that “various divisions ought to be established on the ground; finance, administration, operations, investigations, prosecutions, strategies, communications, asset recovery, and management. All these have to be instituted.
“In respect of all these, without money, we cannot do this,” Mr. Agyebang added
But the Special Prosecutor said he is looking forward to the funds being made available.
“What was put there, I have seen, but it doesn’t match up to my expectations, but I cannot give up.”
“I do not see it as a closed case. I will keep pushing, we will keep pushing, and we will keep engaging, so we get the necessary resources to fund our operations,” he said.
Mr. Agyebeng has in the past indicated his desire to make research and communications the engine of the Special Prosecutor’s office under his tenure.
The Special Prosecutor however commended the government for its efforts in helping to operationalise the office.
In the 2022 budget, GHS 170,504,000 was allocated to the office. GHS 65,000,000 of this amount is for the compensation of employees.
Meanwhile, the Special Prosecutor says as part of efforts to prevent corruption, the office will from January 2022 carry out an anti-corruption risk assessment on all major government contracts as well as the publication of a corruption perception index on all public institutions.
Updating the press on works done by his outfit so far, Mr. Agyebeng indicated that 31 cases before them have been reviewed and are being investigated.
He said the office “will in due course commence the prosecution of the cases it considers strong. There is no case commenced by the OSP pending in the courts at the moment.”
The first special prosecutor, Martin Amidu, had prior to his resignation, complained several times about inadequate resources for the office, saying the government was not honestly committed to the corruption fight.