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Opinions of Tuesday, 17 November 2020

Columnist: Peter Antwi Boasiako

Nothing special about Martin Amidu, he failed woefully

Martin Amidu, Special Prosecutor Martin Amidu, Special Prosecutor

There is absolutely nothing special About Martin Amidu, He failed woefully with his agenda to save the scandalous face of NDC.

Most critical thinkers saw it coming. His behaviour became so questionable and his resignation became highly untenable, especially as soon as the death of President Rawlings was announced. Martin Amidu deserves no empathy whatsoever, he badly failed that responsible position as the Special Prosecutor.

It was becoming very clear that the majority of Ghanaians were getting very much concerned about the actions and behaviour coupled with a number of excuses by the Special Prosecutor, stemming strongly from his recent public pronouncements and exchanges with former Prez John Dramani Mahama, vis-a-vis the core mandate given to him with a unique sense of imperativeness. He ethically and administratively failed the Office of Special Prosecutor.

All the excuses given in his resignation letter including his statement that; "contrary to public perceptions, that my appointment letter was received on 5th February 2020 (almost two -years after my appointment)" are all camouflage, seeking to bamboozle Ghanaian to obtain public sympathy, but the fact is, he deserves none. Martin Amidu was totally useless for the position he occupied as the Special Prosecutor. There was nothing special about him as we saw in three of him.

The first question I would like to pose is, did Martin Amidu realise that the Special Prosecutor's office was created with great sense of urgency by the President and for that matter his ceaselessly public altercations was undermining not only the office of Special Prosecutor but the President as well? or Martin Amidu is just a fortified grumpy disgruntled unpredictable ill-tempered individual who just wanted to use his office to reciprocate vengeance onto certain individuals whom he has personal issues within the NDC party?

As it appeared, Martin Amidu, intentionally targeted certain individuals in Akufo-Addo government to destroy their hard-earned reputation so as to serve his whimsical and capricious political interest to protect the impaired image of NDC, despite the fact that he portrayed to have issues with some personalities at the leadership of NDC.

We spent our precious time reading through the 63 pages unsolicited investigation report He, Amidu produced on Agyapa deal. Martin said he wanted to ascertain any possible corruption risk involved in the deal. But honestly speaking, that Agyapa report was a total waste of time. The report had no meritorious value whatsoever, warranting the unnecessary debate rejuvenated on the Agyapa deal. The only thing the report sought to achieve was the clever and clandestine attempt by Martin Amidu to damage and tarnish the hard-earned image of the current Minister Finance, Ken Ofori-Atta, and some few high profile personalities in-and-around President Nana Akufo-Addo. Nothing else! There was nothing in the so-called "corruption risk assessment" report on the Agyapa deal but as Co-founder of NDC, Martin Amidu was really preparing with any opportunity to cause massive havoc in the NPP government in order to save the face of his NDC party. Martin Amidu cannot be smarter than everybody in Ghana.

The 63-page report on Agyapa, Martin Amidu highlighted and emphasised on the fact that "the Consultations on the Agyapa deal was not comprehensive enough" and again, he believes the selection and appointment of advisors for the agreement did not meet the “fundamentals of probity, transparency and accountability" in his views. What criteria did Martin Amidu use to come to this conclusion? All these were to create ammunition for his opposition NDC party and the so-called Civil society Organisations, to be able to unnecessarily hit hard against the Akufo-Addo government. His report on the Agyapa deal was simply empty.

Now, let's analytically look at this area of Martin Amidu's questionable behaviour and his disrespect to the President that appointed him as Special Prosecutor.

On 3rd February 2020, the President, Nana Akufo-Addo, through his press secretary referred the issue of the "Airbus bribery scandal" to the office of the Special Prosecutor, for immediate investigations. In his unsolicited investigation report on Agyapa Deal dubbed as "Corruption Risk Assessment of Agyapa deal", Martin Amidu unexpectedly included part of the findings on the Airbus Bribery Scandal with one-liner statement into the Agyapa investigation report, suggesting that, his outfits investigation on the Airbus scandal has identified the former Prez John Dramani Mahama as the "Government Official One" (GO1), a confirmation from UK court judgment documents. Using his prerogatives, Martin Amidu then stated that the SP office will not prosecute John Mahama the GO1 due to Ghana's impending general elections, in order to maintain peace and tranquillity.

Now, the question is, what was the motive and the need for Martin Amidu to rather mention the Airbus bribery investigation findings in the Agyapa deal report which is totally different and has no connection whatsoever? What sense does it make for a Special Prosecutor to say that it has identified a crime committed but will not prosecute the culprit just because the said person is going into an election? What immunity covers John Mahama as a flagbearer in this regard? absolute senseless. But all because, the Special Prosecutor would do anything to protect the NDC from prosecution that would cause detrimental damage to its future.

The painful fact is, Martin Amidu should have been sacked a long time ago, but he was saved because as a result of the good relationship that existed between President Nana Akufo-Addo and the late President Rawling. However, now he realises that the demise of Rawlings has blown off any protection he had and therefore he had no other choice but to resign immediately. Amidu is a sublime failure.

Let's consider Martin Amidu's disrespect to President Nana Akufo-Addo. On the Airbus Bribery Scandal, through an official signed letter by the Communications Director at the Presidency, Eugene Arhin that stated that the President of Ghana, Nana Akufo-Addo, has referred the Airbus Bribery Scandal to the Special Prosecutor, and added that, "investigations by SP are expected to be conducted in collaboration with the United Kingdom authorities." On this matter, Mr Martin Amidu voted to report his findings in addition to the report on the Agyapa deal. The reason why he did this is best known by Amidu himself. The Special Prosecutor then decided to go public with details on Airbus findings, engaging in public discourse with his long letter to the media in response to John Mahama, Daring JM to man-up and volunteer a statement so that he, Amidu can prosecute him. Did the SP need JM's voluntary statement before he could prosecute him?. Again, Martin Amidu, after his findings on the Airbus Scandal, failed to report back to the President who instructed him to carry out the investigation but chose to speak to its findings in public. ethically and administratively, Martin Amidu was wrong.

What he did was totally unprofessional and it smacks of incompetence and sheer disrespect to the President that instructed him. It simply shows a lack of sense of urgency he attaches to the Office of Special Prosecutor. It is good he has resigned. He deserves no empathy!.

From day one, Martin Amidu has had excuses upon excuses, nothing got done properly under him. On February 28, 2020, Martin Amidu, with all of his known excuses for his failure, blamed his outfit's inability to successfully prosecute anybody on corruption because he has been sued at the Supreme court. He explained that "there have been no acquittals and convictions in the two corruption cases it has prosecuted since 2018 because of the pending determination by the Supreme Court, which seeks declarations that the appointments of him as the Special Prosecutor and the Deputy Special Prosecutor are unconstitutional, null and void."

However, on 24th May 2020, by a 5-2 majority decision, the Supreme Court stated that the Special Prosecutor, Mr Martin Alamisi Amidu, was declared fit to hold public office. and sure readers would like to know, what then still withheld the Special Prosecutor from successfully and swiftly carrying out investigation and prosecution of corrupt criminals? He has no tangible excuses. It is good he has resigned.

What has Martin Amidu done about the NDC MPs double salaries scandal after openly vowing to jail all of them? Where Martin Amidu with his High Court case against Hon. Ayariga? It is really good that Martin Amidu has exercised the serenity to rather man-up and sacked himself from that responsible office of the Special Prosecutor. His absurdity was getting too much. I have no compassion or sympathy whatsoever for Martin Amidu and his failure.