CPP calls for parameters to check abuse of incumbency

The Convention Peoples Party (CPP) at the weekend called for the setting up of democratic parameters to check potential abuse of incumbency.

“There should be a ban on inauguration and sod-cutting of projects six months to elections.

Ministers of State must attend political party functions with only the official vehicle assigned to him or her; separate party activities from state programmes; and control the display of party paraphernalia on state monuments.”

Mr Bright Oblitie Akwetey, CPP’s Shadow Minister for Justice and Attorney General, told the Ghana News Agency in an interview in Accra that “the use of state facilities, resources by an incumbent Government for the purposes of prosecuting its electoral agenda must be paid for.”

Mr Akwetey, a former State Attorney noted that recent developments on the abuse of incumbency demands that democratic forces and political party leadership come together and set-out modalities to reduce gross abuse of state resources and personnel for political party advantage especially in an election year.

He stressed that the Presidency, Parliament, Electoral Commission, Public Agencies, Civil Society and Political Parties to instigate indispensable measures to control abuse of incumbency and also create a level electoral playing field.

Mr Akwetey also cited abuse of incumbency as a major democratic challenge, with the potential of plaguing the country’s democratic development, stressing “persistent abuse of public office for partisan electoral purposes represents a major threat to the sustenance of multi-party democracy in Ghana”.

He called on the state media to provide a level playing for “minority parties” as the current environment has created lack of a level playing field and the commercialisation of politics”, both of which will need to be addressed.

The Media especially state-owned, print and electronic should provide coverage for smaller political parties instead of most often focusing on two parties; creating the impression of a two-party state.

On the way forward, Mr Akwetey noted that the CPP will continue to strive to give flesh and meaning to the motto, Freedom and Justice. “We would take steps to improve the justice delivery system to make it efficient.

“As Nkrumaists, the government of the CPP will be committed to using the law to promote the attainment of the three pillars of the ideology of Nkrumaism, namely; Self-determination, Social Justice and Pan-Africanism”.

He urged government to focus on providing “basic means of life, and which are work, food and shelter; where poverty and illiteracy will no longer exist and disease is brought under control; and where our educational facilities provide all the children of Ghana with the best possible opportunities for the development of their potentialities”.

On means to combat corruption, the former Attorney General noted that “it would be prudent to hive-off the corruption agenda of CHRAJ and add it to the Economic and Organized Crimes Office, to limit CHRAJ to its original Ombudsman agenda.

“That is what the CPP will do to make CHRAJ more vibrant and responsive, in the pursuit of the rule of law, human rights and administrative justice”.

Mr Akwetey noted that the scope of authority of the SFO now Economic & Organized Crime Office has been broadened to include:  Money laundering; Human trafficking; Criminal cyber activity; Tax fraud and other serious offences.

He said these offences impact negatively on the economy, and must be tackled with all seriousness.

He called on the Government to invest heavily in combating these offences and equip officers of that outfit with the requisite infrastructure and tools.

“These calls for increased personnel, increased efficiency and improved resources and also means to transform the Economic and Organized Crime Office into a partner in national development and reconstruction”, he noted.

Source: GNA

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