ThisWeekGhana.com becomes  the D-O-T
before the dot com
 
Commentary

We invite commentaries from writers all over. The subject is about Ghana and the world. We reserve the right to accept or reject submissions, but we are not necessarily responsible for the opinions expressed in articles we publish......MORE

Note:  Ghanadot does not endorse any link planted by unscrupulous advertisers in articles submitted to us.  We do not want these links.  Do not support them.  They are scammers.

        Home
 
 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

The Martin Amidu Award, the Whistleblower Act of Ghana
E. Ablorh-Odjidja

June 17, 2013


How do we reward such a man; a man who risks his life, sticks to his conscience and principle, goes against the wishes of a president in office at the time and gets fired from his post?

 

Parliament should pass a Whistle Blower Act and name it after Martin Amidu.


Martin Amidu is a hero. After being fired as the Attorney General by President Atta-Mills, he went on a one man crime hunt against Waterville Holdings. This past Friday the Supreme Court ruled unanimously that his case was just and that Waterville should refund the already paid money to the state.


Joy News writes “The Justices in obiter statement, lauded Mr. Amidu for his patriotism and chastised the lawyers for Waterville for failing in their duty to protect the state from the frivolous claims.”


This very statement from the Justices invites a look at how and why state institutions like the Attorney General’s office, The Finance Ministry and Bank of Ghana appended their signatures, and therefore, their approval for the default judgment payment.


But it leaves out one critical question: How did the initial judge come to find in the trial the merit for awarding the default payment?

 

Another question, probably, remains silent for the Justices for now; that if a sitting administration, for some reason, could not prosecute the obvious crime behind the Waterville default judgment payment, what will it not do in an election year to retain power so as to frustrate or prevent future investigation of the crime by a new and hostile administration?

 

Thankfully, the answer is in.  The nine Supreme Court Justices were not intimidated.


The Justices' decision underlines significantly the importance of what Martin Amidu has done. Again, how do we reward such a man?


We know how some public officers are rewarded for keeping silent and covering up crimes perpetrated against the state. Sometimes these officials do so because they are cowed by fear but some others are buoyed by a share of the spoil promised to them  by the wrongdoers.

 

Others even create the crime, find the wrongdoers and provide the help for them to collect the loot.  These are the enablers and there are many of them.


Martin Amidu is not an enabler.  His recent act was on the side of justice. There is a need to reward his stellar act.  It would be the first of its kind in fighting corruption but this should not be too complex for the ordinary citizen to understand.

 

Martin Amidu deserves the award because we want to build a nation of upright citizens.


First, a living memorial should be made for Amidu for his singular patriotic act. He has shown more bravery than the supposed bravery of all the coup makers of the past combined. He has made the whole legal system aware that this legal bravery can be undertaken and accomplished.

 

By this act, Martin Amidu has saved the state millions of dollars today and his example will prevent more millions from being stolen in the future, through such Waterville induced nefarious crimes.


Hence, the suggestion that Parliament should pass a whistleblower act, if there is no such thing already, and name it after Martin Amidu.


Second, Parliament should allow a provision in the act to give 10% of any money recovered to the whistleblower. As such, 10% of the money recovered from Waterville Holdings, and the other related cases brought by Martin Amidu, should go to him.


The Whistleblower Protection Act has been in existence as a Federal law in the United States since 1989 and it has worked.


As a concept, it “protects federal whistleblowers who work for the government and report agency misconduct. A federal agency violates the Whistleblower Protection Act if agency authorities take (or threaten to take) retaliatory personnel action against any employee or applicant because of disclosure of information by that employee or applicant.” Says Wikipedia.


There is a process for protecting the innocent; accuser or accused. This process can be copied, or better still, the concept can be taught by the United States government.


We need the Whistleblower Act in Ghana because somebody must have known all along that there was no government contract for Waterville Holdings, contrary to what the default judgment found and based the payment on.

 

Thankfully, the Justices have concluded in their recent judgment that the claim was false and as such null and void because the claimed contract had not been approved by Parliament as required by the Constitution.


An article on CitiFMonline said “Mr. Ghartey, who was Attorney General under the last New Patriotic Party (NPP) government, had always insisted that, the (NPP) government had declined payment of the judgment debt because the state had no contract with Waterville Holdings.”


The evidence against Waterville was there in plain sight yet no state institution was anxious or willing to see it. And a president went as far as to remove Martin Amidu from the Attorney General’s post because he would not go along with the “gargantuan” crime against the state.


Now, Amidu has been proved right by the Supreme Court by a 9-0 decision.


Strangely, we found in our hearts the will to laud President Atta-Mills when he passed. We argued and debated about how to build a memorial for him and we did. This is not to begrudge President Mills any achievement of his own before he died.


So now is the time for a fitting reward for Martin Amidu.  His act was legal, proper and transformative.  The Whistleblower Act of Ghana should be named the Martin Amidu Act.


E. Ablorh-Odjidja,Publsiher www.ghanadot.com, Washington, DC, June 17, 2013

Permission to publish: Please feel free to publish or reproduce, with credits, unedited. If posted at a website, email a copy of the web page to publisher@ghanadot.com . Or don't publish at all.



 

 

    More commentaries

We Are the Idiots

Commentary, June 18, Ghanadot - The World Health Organization estimates that malaria infects at least 200 million people, of which more than a half-million die, each year. Most malaria victims are African children. People who support the DDT ban are complicit in the deaths of tens of millions of Africans and Southeast Asians.  ......More

 

Ghana needs a public park & reforestation policy

Commentary, June 16, Ghanadot - Ghana needs an inner city public Park and Reforestation Policy (PRP), as part of an intelligent preventative public health policy that will stimulate holistic and healthy lifestyles...More

   

The Martin Amidu Award, the Whistleblower Act of Ghana

Commentary, June 18, Ghanadot - How do we reward such a man; a man who risks his life, sticks to his conscience, goes against the wishes of a president in office at the time and got fired from his post? Parliament should pass a Whistle Blower Act and name it after him.   ..More

 

 

Putin locks horns with West over Syria at G8 summit

Reuters, June 18, Ghanadot - Russian President Vladimir Putin clashed with other world leaders over the civil war in Syria at a tense G8 summit, blocking any mention of the fate of Syrian leader Bashar al-Assad from a final communique to be issued on Tuesday....More

   
  ABC, Australia
FOXNews.com
The EastAfrican, Kenya
African News Dimensions
Chicago Sun Times
The Economist
Reuters World
CNN.com - World News
All Africa Newswire
Google News
The Guardian, UK
Africa Daily
IRIN Africa
The UN News
Daily Telegraph, UK
Daily Nation, East Africa
BBC Africa News, UK
Legal Brief Africa
The Washington Post
BusinessInAfrica
Mail & Guardian, S. Africa
The Washington Times
ProfileAfrica.com
Voice of America
CBSnews.com
New York Times
Vanguard, Nigeria
Christian Science Monitor
News24.com
Yahoo/Agence France Presse
 
  SPONSORSHIP AD HERE  
 
    Announcements
Debate
Commentary
Ghanaian Paper
Health
Market Place
News
Official Sites
Pan-African Page
Personalities
Reviews
Social Scene
Sports
Travel
 
    Currency Converter
Educational Opportunities
Job Opening
FYI
 
 
 
 
Send This Page To A Friend:

The Profile Africa Media Group