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Corruption in Ghana at crisis level; Citizen Movement Against Corruption


A civil society group has asserted that corruption in Ghana has reached a crisis level and has called on those Ghanaians who are still not sure if corruption is a perception or a reality to rethink their position.

The group, Citizens Movement Against Corruption(CMAC), made the assertion at the opening ceremony of Ghana Developing Community Based Association (GDCA) annual regional festival in Tamale. In a speech to the gathering titled, “The extent of corruption, perception or reality, towards a corruption free society” Eden Senanu, vice chairman of CMAC  prodded Ghanaians to report corruption practices without hesitation, arguing that corruption deprives ordinary citizens of services they have paid for.

He noted that corruption is not just rife in the public sector but is also rampant in the private sector. And he blamed inaction and apathy on the part of ordinary Ghanaians for this state of affairs. He identified low level of honesty and opportunity and lack of incentives as factors driving people to become corrupt.

To back his claims that corruption is indeed entrenched in Ghanaian society, Senanu cited the over 680 million Ghana cedis paid out in questionable judgment debts from 2009 to 2011. He added that the money was equivalent to the annual budget for the agricultural sector. He also made reference to the auditor’s general report which stated that the nation lost 170 million cedis to financial irregularities between 2011 and 2012.

Senanu trotted out more evidence to demonstrate how entrenched corruption is in the Ghanaian society; he mentioned the European Union’s decision in December 2014 to withhold 135 million euros in aid after it had conducted research on corruption in the country, and the 200 million Ghana cedis that was unaccounted for at the Ghana Youth Entrepreneurial and Employment Agency (GYEEDA). To date, only 14.5 cedis has been retrieved, he said.

Institutional corruption
For children to go schools at JHS and SHS in Ghana, parents pay bribes and children are aware, Mr Senanu claimed. Exam malpractice used to be among the students, but now teachers and school authorities including Parent-Teacher Associations(PTAs ) and traditional authorities now connive and encourage corruption in the school.

He was quick to add that not every head master is corrupt but some PTAs are encouraging corruption at the school level. He gave instances where a head teacher was chased away by some PTA members for refusing to bribe invigilators during examination.

A chief in the Ashanti region, who is also a professor, had his palace mobbed by community members when he insisted that as an academician he would not tolerate bribing invigilators. The chief bemoaned the high levels of corruption in society and said it had even spread to food production and pointed to some honey dealers melting latex phone and adulterating it with sugar just to make it thick.

Corruption, he added, emanates from all sectors of the economy from school leadership, organizations, banks and tax evasion, among others.

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