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General News of Thursday, 10 June 2021

Source: www.ghanaweb.com

Governing board's problem is beyond Presidential Transition Act – Martin Amidu

Martin Amidu, for Special Prosecutor Martin Amidu, for Special Prosecutor

Martin Amidu says the appointment of governing board members goes behind what is stated in the Presidential Transition Act

• His article comes after some members of the minority complain about the delay of the appointment of board members

• Amidu explains the delay has impacted the governance of such critical statutory boards and corporations


Martin Amidu, the former Special Prosecutor, has said the problem with the appointment of governing boards of some institutions listed in the statute books is beyond the Presidential Transition Act.

Amidu’s latest article on the governing boards comes after the Minority Leader of Parliament, Hon. Haruna Iddrisu, Hon. Alhassan Suhuyini and other members of the minority in parliament have complained of the unjustifiable and undue delay by the government in constituting governing boards of certain statutory bodies and corporations affected by the Presidential (Transition) Act, 2012 (Act 845) which has seriously impacted the discharge of the constitutional functions of these statutory bodies and corporations with serious effect on the governance and economic activities of the nation.

He explains in his article copied to GhanaWeb that, “The serious and justifiable concerns expressed by the Hon. Minority Leader on Thursday, 27 May 2021 which was concurred in by the Hon. Majority Leader six months after the assumption of office of the President on 7th January 2021 might have been raised because it has impacted the governance of such critical statutory boards and corporations, and the economy, as the Ghana Education Trust Fund (GETFund), National Health Insurance Fund (NHIF), the Road Fund Board, and the appointment of Chief Executive Officers for Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies (MMDAs) mentioned in their submissions in parliament.

“It will appear that the Hon. Minority Leader and his other colleagues might have overlooked the fact that the problem of the interference in the proper and timeous functioning of the governing boards of statutory boards and corporations is a calculated and deliberate ploy to enable the executive to facilitate the taking of critical decisions by persons designated by the President to head these institutions, in the more than six months interim period, that has passed since the assumption of office of the President.

“This reasoning is justified by the fact that even the governing boards of statutory boards and corporations made up entirely of representatives of constituent bodies on the boards and corporations have also ceased to function or have not been allowed to function since the Chief of Staff’s directives issued.”

Martin Amidu noted, the functions of some of such statutory boards and corporations made entirely by constituent bodies appear to have been usurped by the executive authority which runs these institutions by verbal instructions to the Chief Executives or acting Chief Executives.

He argues, the Office of the Special Prosecutor Act, 2017 (Act 959) establishes that its governing board is made entirely of representatives of constituent bodies under Section 5 thereof.

“The Board of the Office of the Special Prosecutor has not been allowed to function since the “very urgent” letter of the Chief of Staff written on 12th January 2021 with reference number SCR/DAB9/314/01 with the subject matter of “Reconstitution of Statutory Boards and Corporations” notifying the Chairperson and all Statutory Boards and Corporations that members of statutory boards and corporations coming under subsection 1 of Act 845 ceased to hold those offices on 7th January 2021 when the President assumed his second term as President after the 2020 elections. This is despite the caveat contained in the Chief of Staff’s letter stating that: “For the avoidance of doubt, representatives of constituent bodies on the statutory boards and corporations are not affected by this directive.’”

This caveat, Martin Amidu said, was necessitated by the Supreme Court decision in Donkor v Attorney General, Supreme Court, 12 June 2019 (unreported) which decided, inter alia that:

“...section 14 of Act 845 does not affect representatives of constituent bodies and interest on the governing body who can only be removed by the body or interest that they represent, and in accordance with the tenure and removal provisions of the Act establishing the statutory body or corporation.”

Read his full article below:



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