“If you focus on Martin’s retracted comment and not on the real scandal that the President isn’t addressing, you’re part of why Ghana is sinking!” – Kwaku Antwi-Boasiako posted on Facebook. He is right. You are actually a part of the syndicate enabling the looting you pretend to denounce but that only gets worse as recent survey confirm.
But the quality of the sincere applause for what is ethical conduct has been far more than the ill-thought attacks for the demonstration of candor and maturity, and that’s what matters. Martin Kpebu did a noble thing acknowledging he didn’t have to use “part of the criminal syndicate”.
It is difficult to appreciate why anyone will gloat over that and seek to question his courage and integrity because he spoke the truth. If you could muster only a little of that courage, we will easily succeed in stopping the grand corruption that explains why a poor country is not able to account for 3b dollars each year.
We could avoid paying 5b Cedis in bribes. If only we directed our energies, as much, at public office holders who do not have the respect, courage, and humility to recognize their wrongs, this country will be a lot better.
Well, the next time you are framed up for a serious criminal offence like murder, rape, etc, you could get bail only because Martin spent his own resources and skills to fight for that right for you. The next time someone whom you guaranteed bail for betrays your trust and runs away, you will not be arrested and become a candidate for jail because Martin has already fought to keep you out of that jail and won.
If you fell victim to rape or you are abused and thrown out of your matrimonial home, you could get shelter and financial support to fight the perpetrator because this same Martin you are misled to pour scorn on in your ignorance and blind-partisan political conduct, spent his own resources, time, skill and knowledge to fight for the establishment of the domestic violence victim support fund.
Yes, some of you for some strange reasons believe Oliver Barker Mawuse Vormawor is capable of toppling the Government in a coup d’état. But even so, suspects have rights. It was Martin Kpebu who, in his usual defence of the ordinary citizen, boldly spoke truth to power about the abuse of his rights and treatment as though he had been convicted.
He has stressed that people should not be hanged if they committed harmless blunders in what they say while criticizing those they entrust with the governance of the state. Imagine how many politicians and commentators would survive in such a society.
Stop imagining he was forced or feared facing court over that comment. First, there cannot be what you ignorantly claim to be criminal charges in this matter because there cannot be any such. Second, it will only be a pursuit in an ill-advised nuisance suit and some public office holders would only be set up for maximum damage if they dared to mount the witness stand under cross examination to assert a character free from the corruption, they have accused others of, in a defamation action.
Someone wrote “[i]t’s easy to duck and claim dexterity in the art of war when you don’t actually expect real bullets to fly. Let’s grant these cowards their hollow victory. If they know the anger that’s brewing, they’d be more worried. But Martin’s bravery in taking on these issues so head-on wins my admiration any day. Martin is brewing several Martin-like clones. When the day comes when all the Martins get unleashed, we will see who will show their faces”.
I share the invitation to focus on what angers Martin and impoverishes us so we can get duty-bearers to do right by us in the Northern Development Authority fraudulent inflation of contract-price scandal. Martin blew the whistle publicly right here on Newsfile and the least we expect and legitimately so, is that those indicted and now being investigated by the OSP ought to have been interdicted just as was done to the former PPA boss when Manasseh’s contracts for sale documentary was aired.
Let’s direct our energies to the thieves and their collaborators and not those helping expose them and demanding good governance and democratic accountability.
Read about the bizarre and wasteful Covid-19 fumigation contract Martin spoke about before talking. Manasseh Azure Awuni did that investigative piece revealing a job the district assemblies said they could do was rather packaged in contracts for that one sanitation company.
It already had an existing contract to do that same fumigation job each year, but it was handed this new contract in the name of Covid-19 for potential duplication for double payment. The assemblies said they had the equipment and only needed money to purchase the chemicals for spraying of markets and schools.
This company did the job that the supervising state actors show curious figures on how much it cost the tax-payer. The local government ministry said Phase 1 and Phase 2 of the spraying cost GHC 153 million. The finance minister said Phase 1 alone cost GHC 122 million.
The Local Government and Education Ministries spent about GHC 500 million on the scandalous spraying, which was authorized by the President.
Some four or more reputed experts including scientists at the few specialized public institutions confirmed the WHO position that the mass-spraying was no Covid-19 measure, and there was no state regulatory agency approval for the exercise to fight Covid-19 either.
Citizens watched the investigative documentary and went to sleep. Some will wake up to blame the media as though they paid taxes to Manasseh to risk his life beyond exposing rot.
The Constitution in article 35 (8) enjoins the state to “take steps to eradicate corrupt practices and the abuse of power” and the buck stops with the Executive President who won elections on a campaign to fight corruption.
Source: Samson Lardy Anyenini