Judgement Debt: Ghana could become a failed state

The flagbearer of the Progressive People’s Party (PPP) Dr. papa Kwesi Nduom says Ghanaians “need to purge the kleptocratic elements that have crept into the body politic particularly within the NDC and NPP.”
The former flagbearer of the CPP says the controversial issue of the judgement debt has become a an unmatched national crisis and “a disease that has affected the presidency, public servants of all type and the private sector.”

In a statement released , Dr. Nduom said this “collusion to steal and unimaginable corruption” has resulted in the massive waste of the public’s scarce financial resources.
According to Dr. Nduom, “this get-rich-quick-by-any-means-possible mentality has infected the youth, the public service and made our people skeptical about anybody and anything political.  So much so that we are in danger of the ballot box becoming irrelevant and our democracy illegitimate.”
Dr. Nduom is therefore calling for a joint fight to halt what he believes is the decay that could cripple our country into becoming “a failed state and/or a chronic underachiever.”
‘In the Fourth Republic, judgment debts and negotiated settlements have become a fiendish art and a path to riches for those with the right contacts in government.”
He said as a minister under the erstwhile Kufuor administration, he did his best to avoid any corrupt acts despite the fact that he is a fallible human being.
Dr. Nduom said, while serving as a minister, he “engaged the services of a highly respected lawyer as a trustee to watch over my private businesses while I served in government.  I worked hard to complete projects and initiatives so that I could leave tangible results.”
He expressed anger that while he and other members were working assiduously to promote the course of the country, some of his colleagues at the time, were “taking care of their personal interests and serving themselves.”
“During the NDC 1 and 2 Administrations I was witness to callous acts against business people and “successful-looking” people some of which resulted in negotiated settlements and judgment debts.  I was a victim of high-handedness and can still today take action for wrongful termination of consultancy contracts and non-payment of legitimate invoices.  I know first-hand that political colouring and insensitivity in the actions of public officials can cost the nation dearly.”
He is therefore proposing that, in order to solve the plethora of judgement debts that have engulfed the country, the state must among other things:

  1. Turn the Office of Attorney-General into an Independent Prosecutor’s Office separate from the Ministry of Justice so that that Office is removed from the negative influence of partisan politics.
  2. Separate the Legislature (Parliament) from the Executive (Presidency) so that effective checks and balance can occur.
  3. Set up a non-partisan National Commission to examine all judgment debt claims and settlements in the Fourth Republic with the aim to prepare recommendations to drastically reduce the incidence of negotiated settlements and judgment debts.
  4. Remove the “hand” of the Executive (Presidency) from the metropolitan, municipal and district assemblies and take away the opportunity for partisan patronage from the center.
  5. Establish a Ministry of Public Service to continuously seek improvement in the way work is done and take steps to strengthen public institutions.

Dr. Nduom has therefore declared his party’s commitment to incorruptible leadership ahead of the 2012 polls and calls on Ghanaians to join the party in their quest to wrestle power from the NDC.

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