The Co-Chair of the Citizens Movement against Corruption, Edem Senanu, has welcomed the removal of Colonel Kwadwo Damoah (Retired) as the Commissioner of the Customs Division of the Ghana Revenue Authority
He said the move would help investigations of the Office of the Special Prosecutor (OSP) in a corruption-related act involving Labianca Company Limited, which Col Damoah had been indicted.
Mr Senanu told the Ghana News Agency that his removal: “Will help… so, nobody will start thinking that anyone has tampered with any information. It is good for Col Damoah himself and it is good for the OSP.”
“It allows the process to be seen as independent, so, whatever findings they will make will be clear, and gives us an opportunity to try and make sure that the system works for the people of Ghana,” he added.
He commended the President for the decision to remove Col Damoah from office, noting that it was an indication the Government could “investigate anything even when your man is at post – it is the best way.”
The anti-corruption campaigner, however, asked the Government to be “ swift and robust” in handling all corruption-related issues.
Mr Senanu said: “Anytime there’s something, tell the officer to go home for two weeks to one month, let the investigation agencies go through, let the evidence be in the public domain and call the person back if he’s cleared. If we always do that, the public will know that the President won’t shield anyone.”
Meanwhile, Mr Sampson Asaki Awingobit, President of the Importers and Exporters Association, had said, the circumstances leading to the removal of Col Damoah could demoralize “hard-working” Customs officers.
“The standards that Col. Damoah set at GRA in terms of revenue mobilization, I do not know who will be able to fit into that seat or be able to rally the men and women behind him to be able to meet revenue targets.” Mr Awingobit said.
Nana Asante Bediatuo, Secretary to the President, in a statement on Monday, said Colonel (Rtd) Damoah had been directed to hand over his duties to an acting Deputy Commissioner at the Authority, Seidu Iddrisu Iddisah.
This is due to the expiration of his contract of service as Commissioner (Customs Division) of the Ghana Revenue Authority on October 13, 2021,
The Customs Division of the GRA had been captured in two investigations by the Office of the Special Prosecutor (OSP).
One of the cases involves the issuance of what the OSP described as “unlawful” customs advanced rulings in favour of Labianca Company Limited, a frozen food company.
The OSP is also investigating the auction sale of vehicles and other goods by the GRA from July 1, 2016 to August 15, 2022.
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