The Auditor General, Daniel Domelevo, wants public officials to declare their assets publicly and not only in sealed envelopes as stipulated in the Asset Declaration Act.
According to him, the current asset declaration regime does not enhance accountability and does not ensure compliance by officials.
Speaking at the Ghana Integrity Initiative’s multi-stakeholder forum on business integrity in Accra, Mr. Domelevo said, if the declaration is made publicly, citizens will be empowered to lodge complaints to the Commission for Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ) when they feel that a public official has under-declared his assets.
“Non-compliance or not doing the full disclosure should be reported to the CHRAJ, how will the public know if they don’t even know what has been disclosed. What has been disclosed is only between you and the Auditor General.. So these are some of the legal questions we must be solving now rather than later,” he said.
This is not the first time the Auditor General is raising questions about the country’s asset declaration regime.
Last year at a round table discussion themed: “Fighting corruption in the public sector of Ghana, the role of Assets Declaration,” organized by the Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA), he described the regime as a joke
He said the current act does not make it compulsory for public officers to declare their assets, hence no punishment can be meted out to those who refuse to declare their assets.
“What we are practicing in Ghana is Asset concealment and not Asset declaration, nobody sees what’s in there until the court orders for it when that individual is involved in a corruption scandal…The laws should be made in such a way that all public office holders are obligated to declare their assets, those who will not comply should not have any business accepting public office appointments,” he said.