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The Auditor General (AG), Daniel Domelevo has called for the backing of Ghanaians as he prepares to recover every penny siphoned from the state coffers.
His appeal comes barely 24hours after a seven-member panel of the Supreme Court (SC) ruled on Wednesday ordering him to immediately initiate process of surcharging any person found to have misappropriated state funds.
Also, the panel headed by Ghana’s Chief Justice, Justice Sophia Akuffo directed that where applicable, criminal action should be instituted against the accused persons by the country’s Attorney General.
Declaring readiness to recoup the monies looted from the state Thursday on Morning Starr, which pressure group, Occupy Ghana said is well over GHS40billion, Mr. Domelevo appealed to all and sundry to come on board.
According to him, the task ahead is an arduous one and that he is oblivious of the amount of evidence that will be required “before we can do the surcharge.”
“So let me say that I am happy you say Occupy Ghana has a figure which I know of. It is not just Auditor General. It a collective responsibility. I’ll appeal to Occupy Ghana and all Ghanaians to let us do this together,” he pleaded.
He continued “If you have any evidence to support it, because what is written in the audit report you may have to go back to the first document and establish that…this is the evidence because people will challenge our disallowance and surcharge and that will go to court.
“If we go to court we must provide the evidence. So I’ll appeal to Occupy Ghana and Ghanaians that it is a collective responsibility to protect the public funds which is in the interest of all of us.”
We’re coming for our cash
He said with the backing of the Ghanaian populace nothing will discourage him from executing the Supreme Court’s order to the letter and that “wherever there is outright embezzlement of state funds, we will go for it.”
This, he explained extends to private entities and individuals found to have siphoned the state’s coffers.
The ruling, he said is resounding giving great clarity to the provisions of the constitution.
“Hitherto, there has been two schools of thoughts; one school is of the view that as longs the Auditor General produces the annual report to parliament and mentioned in there infractions and irregularities in financial management that was enough…which is the old school.”
“However,” he added “there is another school of thought which I belong to which is of the view that the constitution is very clear that in the course of the audit, if you come across any expenditure which is contrary to law it must be disallowed and whoever is responsible to be held accountable.”
The SC’s ruling Wednesday was necessitated by an action instituted against the Attorney General and Auditor General by pressure group Occupy Ghana for refusing to surcharge persons who are said to have misappropriated monies belonging to the state to the tune of over GHS40billion.