Togbe Afede XIV, Agbogbomefia of Asogli, has lamented Ghana’s corrupt outlook in recent times and affects the nation’s democratic reputation and development.
He said corruption remained the main hindrance to the nation’s growth and was being sustained by political leaders seeking personal gain over national service, adding there was need to “turn her around.”
Togbe Afede addressing the second edition of the Asogli Yam Festival Anti-Corruption Day Celebration in Ho, noted with concern the steady stream corrupt practices flooding the country.
“Our political elite have replaced our colonial masters in a more viscous scramble for our resources. If you want to know why they spend so much money campaigning to get to political positions or appointments, the answer is the desire to gain control of our resources. it is not for leadership, at least, for the most of them.”
The event, held at the forecourt of the Asogli palace, fell on the birthday of Ghana’s first President, and Togbe Afede noted how the nation, which had set out prosperous, got outpaced by many.
“Few decades ago, Ghana was obviously ahead of the Asian tigers. But the reality today is that we have failed to achieve the ideals of the 1992 constitution and the vision of our founding fathers.
“I think our chaotic economic situation is the product of a toxic mix among others of lack of proper planning, and a consequent episodic approach to economic management and bad monetary policy that has indexed our future to the past; our dishonesty, partisanship, cronyism, and tribalism,” the Agbogbomefia said.
He, however, noted that corruption cut across and “not just the politicians,” but it was becoming a part of the nation’s culture, therefore, all, including “parasitic” public officials who take cover under confidentiality and secrecy, should be called to order.
The Agbogbomefia said weak institutions and corrupt attitudes remained part of the problem, yet the nation retained the resources for a turnaround, therefore “all must come together and fight corruption.
“We can turn Ghana around through honesty, hard work, and genuine love for our nation. But it requires leadership. Leadership encourages us to work together and do things differently. Leadership that respects the truth, eschews divisiveness” he concluded.
The anti-corruption event has several dignitaries in attendance, including traditional and religious leaders, heads of agencies and departments, and political leaders.
Mr Daniel Yao Dormelevo, a former Auditor General and a staunch anti-corruption campaigner, said, “corruption is the deadliest disease that has ever visited our country.”
He called for a “sound” public financial management system, a strict asset declaration regime, and fiscal decentralisation among other interventions.
Mr Dormelevo also called to “commercialise the prosecution of corruption,” saying individuals could be empowered to pursue rot in society for a fee.
Dr Nyaho Nyaho-Tamakloe called on prominent voices to speak up against raging corruption and abuse of power.
This Year’s Yam Festival also marked the 20th anniversary of the instalment of Togbe Afede, one of the nation’s most prominent voices against corruption and bad governance.