Parliament has suspended the approval of budget estimates of GH¢129,000,000 for the office of the Special Prosecutor following concerns about the non-payment of 16 months’ salary of the Special Prosecutor, Kissi Agyebeng.
This is despite assurances from the Chairman of the Committee on Constitutional, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs, Kwame Anyimadu Antwi that the arrears owed the Special Prosecutor could be paid within one week after an engagement with the Finance Ministry.
But the Majority Leader insisted that the budget estimates for the office will only be approved after concrete assurance by the Committee on Constitutional, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs if the arrears will truly be paid.
The Minority Leader, Haruna Iddrisu on Thursday raised the concern of the non-payment of the Special Prosecutor ahead of the presentation of the annual budget estimates report of the Office of Special Prosecutor for the year 2023 by the Constitutional, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs Committee of Parliament.
“Office of Special Prosecutor, you put that man there you haven’t determined his condition of service. He hasn’t been paid. Some appointments have been done which raise questions as to whether the board was aware or not. We have to probe further the happenings at the Special Prosecutor. He hasn’t been paid for 16 months, and you are coming to me for a report. Meanwhile, no report has been laid here,” Mr. Iddrisu said.
An incensed Minority Leader questioned if any of the government appointees who have kept mute about the issue can live without salary.
“Your commitment to fighting corruption begins with independent constitutional bodies like the Special Prosecutor, who has been denied salary. Can any of you live without a salary?” he said.
He warned the government not to lay any report for the judiciary unless the Special Prosecutor’s salary is paid.
“Nobody will lay a report in respect of the judiciary here, unless we have the formal correspondence from President Nana Akufo-Addo, in accordance with Article 179 of his comments on the budget of the judiciary. Stay away from the budget of the judiciary and Special Prosecutor,” he stated.