Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) have called on the government to appoint a substantive Commissioner of the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ).
They argued the vacancy which has been there since the former CHRAJ boss Lauretta Lamptey was sacked by the President some eight months ago has taken a toll on the Commission’s work.
CHRAJ has for past year come under severe criticism for what many have described as its lack of action.
They claimed the Commission has failed to live up to its establishing document which beckons it to arrest issues of human rights abuse in the country.
Speaking to radioxyzonline at the first National Anti-Corruption Forum, Deputy Director of the Center for Democratic Development (CDD) Ghana, Frank Oduro expressed worry.
He disclosed he sees no reason why “almost two years down the line, CHRAJ which is the implementation agency for NACAP still doesn’t have a substantive head.”
Mr Oduro questioned the resolve of the government to fight the menace of corruption and human rights abuse in the country.
If the government is fighting the duo, he does not see it since the Commission which is supposed to lead the fight is incapacitated in the area of leadership and resource allocation.
According to him, if the government is serious it will commit resources both financially and human resource to empower the Commission to be able to carry out its work.
This does not mean the Deputy CHRAJ boss, Joseph Whittal and the others there are not working, he said.
However, President John Dramani Mahama’s advisor on Governance and Corruption, Daniel Batidam has challenged the claim that the absence of a CHRAJ boss is affecting the Commission.
He claimed the effectiveness of an institution does not reside in the leader but rather in the mechanisms put in place to strengthen it.
“So it is important to have a sense of what institution building is about,” he said, adding, “If we build a strong institution the head might not be necessarily the solution.”
CHRAJ is currently considering two major cases bordering on human rights, corruption and/or conflict of interest.
The alleged military brutality of a 16-year-old Christopher Kombian and the Ford Expedition vehicle gifted to President John Dramani Mahama by a Burkinabe contractor, Oumarou Djibril Kanazoe.