Office of Accountability
The Chairman of the Office of Accountability, Prof. Kwabena Konadu Oduro, has vehemently attacked the Ghana Centre for Democratic Development (CDD–Ghana) for raising some concerns about the agency. According to Prof. Oduro, “there is nobody in CDD who is more qualified than him to question the mandate of the Office of Accountability (OA), an agency established to monitor the conduct of Ministries and other government appointees. He was speaking at a media briefing in Accra. It will be recalled that the July 2007 newsletter of the CDD, among other things, reported that “the creation of the Office of Accountability as a special unit under the Presidency could be justified if it was dedicated to educating and advising the President’s appointees about ethics in public office as well as ensuring their compliance with existing anti-corruption laws and standards of public ethics and integrity. But the Office of Accountability has not even seen it fit to publish the Code of Ethics for Government Appointees it claims to have developed, let alone educate the appointees about their ethical and legal obligations.” Reacting to this, Pro. Oduro rejected such a claim by CDD and said his outfit produced Executive Guidelines on Code of Conduct and Ethical Behavior for Presidential appointees; he did not provide a definite answer but said a lot has been given to government appointees. Copies of the 150 guidelines were made available to each journalist at the function. These copies are the first of its kind sine the Office of Accountability was established in 2003.
Prof. Oduro again responded to CDD’s report which said “the Office of Accountability has further injured its credibility and public standing by venturing into matters clearly outside its limited remit, such as publicly condemning strike actions by doctors and teachers.” According to him, being a competent and qualified teacher having taught for more than 10 years at the University of Ghana Medical School, he has the right to comment on doctors and teachers when they embark on industrial action and therefore CDD got it all wrong. CDD also reported that “an important tactic of fighting corruption is to be able to ‘name and shame’ offenders and thus convey the message that nobody is above the law and the law will take its course where one fails to comply with the law.” Commenting on this, Prof. Oduro said under no circumstance should a government official or appointee be ‘named and shamed’, but instead there must be an appropriate way to deal with the one than dragging the name into the mud.” He spelt out the mission of OA. Some of these are formulating policies and practices which will promote transparency, accountable stewardship, selflessness, devotion to duty and dignified self-comportment.
Source: The Daily Dispatch