The Special Prosecutor nominee, Kissi Agyebeng, has stated that he would consider leaving the job if he’s faced with challenges that are “unbearable”.
Mr. Agyebeng said, although his first inclination will be to “persevere along” amid difficult times, he will throw in the towel if the challenges become unbearable.
However, he was optimistic that he would not be faced with the situation of having to give up the job due to some challenges.
“My first inclination will be to persevere along because that is my calling and oath that I have sworn. Unless it becomes so unbearable, then I will say, the Republic should take its job. But I am not that kind of person. I am not predisposed to that kind of open confrontation,” he said this during his vetting in Parliament on Thursday, July 22, 2021, when he asked about what his reaction would be should he be confronted with the problems his predecessor faced.
Kissi Agyebengwas nominated as Special Prosecutor months after his predecessor, Martin Amidu resigned in November 2020.
Martin Amidu, in his letter of resignation, said President Akufo-Addo had not been able to ensure his independence and freedom of action.
“The one condition upon which I accepted to be nominated as the Special Prosecutor when you invited me to your Office on 10th January 2018 was your firm promise to me that you will respect and ensure same by your Government for my independence and freedom of action as the Special Prosecutor,” he stated.
Citing another example of one of the triggers for his resignation and the decision to make it public, Mr. Amidu said he has had a “traumatic experience” between 20th October 2020 and 2nd November 2020 after releasing his corruption risk assessment on the Agyapa Royalties Limited deal.
He also raised concerns about his emoluments and benefits, saying there had not been any effort to give him what is due him per his appointment letter.
Martin Amidu said while he was not too bothered about the fact that he had not been given any emoluments, the “Deputy Special Prosecutor has also not been paid any emoluments since her appointment, and there is the need to redress that situation for her now that I am out of the way.”
Mr. Agyebeng told the Appointments Committee of Parliament that, President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has promised not to interfere in his work.
Attorney-General and Minister for Justice, Godfred Yeboah Dame, nominated Mr. Agyebeng, a law lecturer and private legal practitioner, as a replacement for Martin Amidu, who resigned from the position in November 2020 under very controversial circumstances.
Kissi Agyebeng was called to the Ghana Bar in October 2003 and holds a Bachelor of Laws (LLB) degree from the University of Ghana, as well as, Master of Laws (LLM) degrees from Schulich School of Law, Dalhousie University, Canada, and Cornell Law School, USA.
He has, since 2006, been teaching Criminal Law at the University of Ghana, whilst engaging in private law practice.
The Office of the Special Prosecutor has the mandate to investigate and prosecute all suspected corruption and corruption-related offenses as public officers, politically exposed persons, and persons in the private sector alleged to have been involved in any corruption and corruption-related offenses.
Apart from initiating investigations on its own, Act 959 gives the Office of the Special Prosecutor the power to receive and investigate complaints of alleged corruption from the public or investigate suspected corruption or corruption-related offenses upon referral from public bodies such as the Attorney General’s Department, the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ) and the Economic and Organised Crime Office (EOCO).