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Saturday, January 21, 2012

Attorney-General, Martin Amidu, has been sacked

From: Ghana l Malik Abass Daabu/Myjoyonline.com          Last Updated: January 21, 2012, 6:30 am
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Attorney-General, Martin Amidu, has been sacked
Martin Amidu
Embattled Attorney-General and Minister of Justice, Martin Amidu, has been sacked by President John Evans Atta Mills.

In the wake of his public statements alleging some key persons in government had orchestrated unwarranted media attacks on him because they believed “my integrity and professionalism as a lawyer was a threat to the concealment of gargantuan crimes against the people of Ghana in which they might be implicated,” President Mills demanded proof or a resignation letter from his Attorney-General, without which he would be sacked.

It appears Mr Amidu has not met the president's demand and the axe has been brought on him.

The AG’s statement attracted a sharply divided opinion – while members of the governing NDC’s communications team, riled by the statement, called for his immediate resignation or dismissal, anti-graft agencies and some opposition elements insisted Mr Amidu needed to be allowed to stay to prosecute the people he claimed were committing crimes against the state.

Felix Kwakye Ofosu, a member of the NDC communications team who felt insulted by Mr Amidu’s statement that “The ethics of a legal profession and the Bar, of which I am a leader, are more sacred to me than that of young and inexperienced members of a communication team of the NDC who are absolutely ignorant of the functions of an Attorney-General under the Constitution of Ghana,” said the AG’s position in government had become untenable and that he must resign.

Pro-government newspapers - Daily Post; the Informer; the National Democrat; the Ghanaian Lens - described by Mr Amidu as “perverse” and “rented NDC press” joined the calls for the AG’s dismissal with a unanimous banner headline, “A-G Martin Amidu Must Go!”

Opposition elements hailed the AG’s bravery and forthrightness.

Executive Secretary of the Ghana Integrity Initiative Vitus Azeem Thursday morning told Joy FM, the president’s demands on the AG to prove his allegations or resign else he would be sacked, were improper and represented a setback in the fight against corruption.

He suggested the AG may be pressured not to reveal any proof that may embarrass government and some individuals especially in an election year.

Whether Mr Martin Amidu has chosen to protect party interest by not saying anymore, or he simply puffed and couldn’t produce any proof of his allegations when challenged to do so and, therefore, fell on his own sword, is hard to tell.

What is certain is that Mr Amidu’s resignation will not wish away the controversy ignited by his explosive public statement.

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