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Corruption scandal already? The 5th Republic is barely off the ground.


Official or public corruption in Ghana is nothing new; it has been part of the national DNA since we drove out the British colonialists 60 years ago. Efforts, since then, to weed out corruption have met with very little success.

Those who blatantly engage in it often get off with a slap on the wrist and if they are sent to jail at all, it is always for a brief, truncated period. Eventually, they are let out to enjoy their loot.

Which explains why I am doubtful if we will ever get to the bottom of the current corruption scandal swirling around our elected representatives in parliament, particularly the Vetting Committee .

It would certainly not be out of place to state emphatically that something fishy did take place between our conniving political representatives, despite vigorous denials to the contrary.

Money, indeed, did change hands and backroom deals were struck to smoothen the way for certain ministerial appointees.

It is a huge disappointment, and a crying shame that once again, our politicians, our chosen representatives have demonstrated an acute lack of judgment on a matter as important and as sensitive as corruption.

Those involved in the scandal are coming up with all kinds of rationales to deny their complicity in the crime; they are tight-lipped and are threatening court action to redeem their so called good names.

They take to the air — radio and television — to vehemently dismiss allegations of financial malfeasance, while telling skeptical Ghanaians that nothing indecent had occurred. They have succeeded in creating this wide web of lies, falsehoods and deception to bamboozle and to mislead Ghanaians.

One sad thing about this latest corruption saga is that the 5th Republic is barely off the ground and already the cancer is rearing its ugly head. The lesson here is that our politicians don’t just get it; they seem incapable of learning from past missteps of others. The previous government paid a huge price at the polls for perceptions and allegations of corruption that marked its day to day governance of the country.

Ghanaians elected their politicians to do the nation’s business, but the politicians appear eager to mix business with corruption, and to engage in shady deals, all designed to enrich themselves at the expense of voters.

This is a recipe for political disaster and public frustration with democracy. Our politicians should get this through their thick skulls; until they own up to their shady ways and be honest with those who put them in office, public confidence and them and in state institutions will continue to erode.


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