General News of Tuesday, 13 February 2018
Managing partner at Bentsil-Entsil, Letsa and Ankomah, Ace Ankomah has attributed the deepening level of corruption to weak institutions and structures to deal with the menace.
Ace Ankomah posited that the system has been structured in such a way that people find it difficult to adhere to its requirements and tenets and as such bend the rules to have their way.
He suggested that if institutions made it easier for people who flout the law to be punished without any hurdles, it will deter others from either breaking the law or finding ways to bend the laws when it catches up with them.
Citing an instance to buttress his claim, Ace Ankomah remarked “we have a system that is setup to be corrupt. We have a system that is setup to make you and I corrupt. If I am stopped on a traffic offence, speeding, why do I have to go to Court? Give me the fine let me go pay it. But let’s say I am travelling t Tarkoradi and I’m speeding along the way and I’m stopped, I have to go to Tarkoradi Court about three times before I’m fine GHC200; so travel back and forth in two weeks because I can’t stay there, just to plead guilty, hotel bills and the man was just asking for GHC20. The system is set up for me to pay the GHC20, but if he just gives me a ticket, I don’t have to go to Court, I go to the nearest place and I pay it. Next time I will behave better”
When quizzed about whether he has ever found himself in a situation where he has had to pay bribe to have his way especially to the police or traffic operatives, the leading OccupyGhana member vehemently said, “every human being has had to compromise but I will tell you what, I will never pay a bribe. To whom?”
“Look they don’t even accept tips when I offer it. I got to the Airports once, some guys who are at the airport saw my face and said oh, Mr Ankomah can we help you? They helped me outside and I tried to give them money, they embarrassed me. Just yesterday, a senior police officer sent somebody to bring something to me, I was in a meeting and so I said who came, give him money for transport. They returned it. People don’t like my money even if I offer it they won’t take” he recounted.
He boasted, “me I don’t need to bribe anybody. I won’t break the law. If you stop me for speeding, I will beg you” during an interview with Kwabena Kyenkyenhene Boateng, host of ‘21minutes with KKB’.
He alluded to human intervention as being one of the things that feeds corruption and was convinced that should that be limited, institutions will rake in more revenue than they do now.
“One of the things that feeds corruption is the human intervention. If there’s too much interface it is likely to lead corruption. Cast your mind back, you remember the long room? the customs room? It was a long room filled with human beings with moneys going under the tables. Anas went and filmed it, President Mills went and blasted them, it didn’t change, and then President AKufo-Addo and Vice President Bawumia says you know what, we have eliminated it. If your things arrive go unto the computer portal, check it will tell you when the things are ready. The government is suddenly making more money from customs than it previously did.”