Corruption crusaders at a stakeholders’ forum on; “Enhancing public accountability and environmental governance” have urged citizens to take advantage of the Whistle-Blowers Act to fight the canker.
They said the war against corruption could only be won if citizens take up the mantle to report acts of corruption to the appropriate authorities, especially by using the Whistle-Blowers Acts to report such acts to complement the efforts of the mandated institutions.
The forum, organised by La Nkwantanang-Madina Municipal Directorate of the National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE) with support from the Assembly, was to empower community members to demand for accountability from duty bearers.
The forum forms part of the Commission’s Anti-Corruption, Rule of Law and Accountability Programme and the National Anti-Corruption Action Plan initiative funded by the European Union, targeted at reducing corruption and improving accountability, probity, transparency and compliance of the citizenry to the Rule of Law.
Mr Ebo Arhin, a Resource Person from the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ) said the country lost GH¢15 billion annually through corruption.
He stated that Article 41 (F) of the 1992 Constitution enjoined all citizens to protect and preserve public funds.
Touching on how to report corrupt acts to mandated institutions, Mr Arhin urged citizens to note the name of the perpetrator, time of the act, where it took place, what was involved and how it was carried out since they were key answers to unravelling corruption secrets.
Mr Fredrick Asiamah, the Municipal Planning Officer, called on politicians to stop the constant interference and allow state institutions to work without fear or favour.
He urged chiefs and residents to collaborate with the Assembly to form a task force to deal with trouble makers in the community.
“People involved in corruption should be dealt with after findings and investigations and also protect the whistleblowers,” he said.
He urged chiefs and residents to collaborate with the Assembly to form a task-force that would complement the efforts of state institutions to curb social deviance.
Mrs Ophelia Ankrah, the Municipal Director of NCCE, on her part, reiterated the need to enhance education to minimize the canker.
“Many accuse political figures as the most corrupt but individuals also engage in corruption in one way or the other and that is affecting our development. We need to discuss it and create awareness of the negative impact it has on the country”.
On the need to ensure that the environment was protected from degradation, Ms Lucy Yaaba, an Environmental and Sanitation Officer, urged citizens to make the cleanliness of the environment a priority.