The Vice President, Alhaji Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, has disclosed that Government is determined to fight corruption to the barest minimum by introducing efficient and effective systems in the key institutions of State. He noted that the Ghanaian society is largely informal and in such an environment, having efficient and effective systems is the way to reduce the corrupt practices as citizens access essential services.
The Vice President was speaking at the maiden Anniversary Lectures organised by Ghana Audit Service in partnership with OccupyGhana, a Civil Society Organisation, to celebrate the second anniversary of the Supreme Court ruling on the Auditor-General’s powers of disallowance and surcharge on 14 June 2017. The Lecture was on the theme “From Surcharging to Safeguarding: Next Steps in the Fight to Protect the Public Purse.”
Dr. Bawumia said Government is putting in place institutions and long term measures that will automate public service delivery to curb the incidence of bribery and other underhand dealings which are hurting service delivery in public institutions. He cited the online business registration, online driver license application, online NHIS renewal, port clearance automation, online passport application as some of the measures that have helped to reduce corruption.
Delivering the key note address, the Vice President disclosed that Government has significantly increased resources available to anti-corruption agencies including the Audit Service. In addition, Dr. Bawumia said the passage of the Right to Information Act and the establishment of the Office of the Special Prosecutor are ample evidence of Government’s commitment to rid the Ghanaian society of corrupt practices. He added that as Government completes the National Identification process and the Ghanaian society goes completely cashless in 2020 with the successful implementation of the Mobile Money Interoperability platform, the opportunities for corruption will be reduced.
He conceded however, that the fight against corruption is not over, and assured that Government will continue to roll out essential reforms and resource institutions mandated by the Constitution and other laws of the country to protect the public purse.
In conclusion, the Vice President applauded OccupyGhana and citizens who stand up against corruption and embezzlers of public funds. He appealed to everyone to continue in “this most critical work of protecting our common wealth”.