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At his age, what did he fear? – Prof. Gyampo questions Amidu’s claim of threats

A Political Science Lecturer at the University of Ghana, Legon, has described as unfortunate a decision by former Special Prosecutor Martin Amidu to resign from his position due to some alleged threats on his life.

Professor Gyampo said the Special Prosecutor had an excellent opportunity to make his mark, however, he resorted to the line of least resistance by resigning from his post.

“At his age, and given his experience, what did he [Amidu] fear about threats of death and intimidation? If armed robbers do not fear to die during robbery attacks even at very fortified places, how can an aged person like Amidu, doing the right thing for society, give up, simply because of threats on his life?

“As a young man, I have received several threats on my life before, for daring to speak my mind. But so what? I am sure he had similar threats when he fell out with Prof Mill’s government and became a Vigilante Citizen,” Prof. Gyampo said.

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This comes after Martin Amidu’s allegations of threats on his life following his corruption risk assessment on the Agyapa deal.

“The events of 12th November 2020 removed the only protection I had from the threats and plans directed at me for undertaking the Agyapa Royalties Limited Transactions anti-corruption assessment report and dictates that I resign as the Special Prosecutor immediately,” Mr Amidu explained in a four-paged letter addressed to the President.

But reacting to this, the Senior Political Science lecturer said Mr. Amidu should have been aware of the kind of system he was going to work for before accepting his appointment.

“Didn’t Amidu know that in our part of the world, corruption is rather the rule, than the exception and it will fight anyone who fights it? Didn’t he know that transitional democracies are always quick to create institutions just to render them toothless by open or surreptitious executive interference and by denying them the needed resources to function?

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“Didn’t he know that in developing democracies, some people are untouchable, and that if you touch them, there will be consequences? Didn’t he know that it is normal in a developing democracy for people in power to react the way they may have reacted about his report that exposes some wrongdoing?,” he added.

He also reminded Mr Amidu that he was “only a mere Special Prosecutor and not an Independent Public Prosecutor.”

“The two are completely different. The Special Prosecutor cannot be practically independent, as it operates in the shadows of the Attorney-General, who is a partisan appointee and can actually stop the Special Prosecutor from carrying out certain investigations.

“When some of us advocated for the separation of the Attorney-General’s Department from the Ministry of Justice and the creation of an Independent Public Prosecutor, way back in 2006, we were calling for an Independent Officer who won’t walk in the shadows of any government appointee.

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“Amidu knew he wasn’t an Independent Public Prosecutor, and yet he wanted to be independent,” Professor Gyampo said.