Former Commissioner of the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ) Justice Emile Short has stated that the calls for the revocation of the appointment of Kwame Owusu as chair of the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) board among other concerns are justified.
He wants the President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, to rethink the appointment of the former Director-General of the Ghana Maritime Authority (GMA) who was accused of corruption and conflict of interest albeit not yet cleared in any investigations.
Contributing to the controversy surrounding Mr. Owusu’s appointment on The Key Points on TV3, Mr. Short said even though he has not closely followed the development, the appointment “sends a wrong signal on the standards of appointments”.
“It might not have been appropriate to appoint [Kwame Owusu] to such a sensitive position such as GRA when these allegations are still in the air,” he explained.
According to the former CHRAJ boss, who also chaired the Ayawaso West Wuogon Commission of Inquiry, it would have been appropriate for the president to wait for “the dust to settle” before making the appointment.
He reiterated that appointments by the president must be seen to be “meritorious and not on nepotism”.
Former Executive Director of anti-corruption body Ghana Integrity Initiative (GII) Vitus Azeem, in his contribution to the issue, demanded for the immediate withdrawal of Mr. Owusu’s appointment until further notice.
He also emphasized that it was wrong for the president to have appointed a man whose head is buried in corruption and conflict of interest allegations to chair a revenue-mobilization institution.
Co-chair of the Citizen’s Movement Against Corruption Edem Senanu shared the same views but added the appointment sets a bad precedent in the country.
He further contends an argument by some government functionaries including Deputy Information Minister, Pius Hadzide, that Mr. Owusu set a record while at GMA in making profits.
According to Mr. Senanu, even if it is true that GMA made profits under Mr. Owusu’s tenure, it is not still a justifiable ground for the new appointment since his integrity has been brought to question.
By P.D Wedam|3news.com|Ghana