26 July 2017

Gov’t withdraws Special Prosecutor Bill

Government has withdrawn the Office of the Special Prosecutor Bill from Parliament following vehement calls by the minority.

The Parliamentary, Constitutional and Legal Committee of Parliament last week declined a request by government for the office of the Special Prosecutor’s Bill to be passed under a certificate of urgency.

The committee recommended the Bill goes through all the normal processes.

The Minority raised issues of constitutional infractions, insisting the Bill had not been gazetted at the time it was first laid on Tuesday, July 18.

“The Office of the Special Prosecutor as envisaged in the Bill will transcend different political regimes, hence, the need for the Committee to engage in broader consultations with Civil Society Groups and other key Stakeholders to solicit their inputs.”

“The Committee acknowledges that the Attorney-General’s Office is overburdened in the discharge of its duties and therefore the need to carve out some of its investigative and prosecutorial duties to the proposed Office of the Special Prosecutor. The Committee however, does not see any vacuum created by the absence of the Office of a Special Prosecutor to warrant the Bill to be treated as urgent,” The Committee’s report said.

It is, not clear if the Bill will be relaid as Parliament is scheduled to go on recess first week of August.

President Akufo-Addo on his campaign trail ahead f the December 2016 elections, announced that his government would create an office of a special public prosecutor to prosecute ‘certain’ corrupt cases in the public sector.

He said the office of the prosecutor would be created within six months in office if he won the election.

The Bill for the Zongo and Inner City development has also been withdrawn by government.

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