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We are setting a very dangerous precedence – Civil Society Group on Auditor-General’s leave

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Anti-Corruption organization, Citizen Movement Against Corruption is asking government to review its order for the Auditor-General, Daniel Yaw Domelevo to take his accumulated leave.

The group says the move is a bad precedence, therefore, government must take another look at it.

“The manner in which it was done, we have concerns; the legal context there are issues, and we are thinking that this is not the way we want to go as a country.

“The labor law suggests that accumulated leave or leave not taken is forfeited at the end of the year, and so one of the key questions on our minds is how this leave get accumulated if the law does not allow leaves to be accumulated?,” Co-Chairperson of the group said on JoyNews’ Newsnite.

The President, Nana Akufo-Addo, June 30, 2020 directed Mr. Domelevo, to take his accumulated annual leave of 123 working days.

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A statement from the Presidency explained that the decision is based on sections 20 (1) and 31 of the Labour Act, 2003 (Act 651), which apply to workers, including public office holders such as the Auditor-General, but there have been concerns from the public on the matter.

Some members of the public and even major stakeholders in the country have reacted to the decision saying that the President asking the Auditor- General to take an “accumulated leave” is questionable.

Joining persons who have raised concerns is the anti-corruption group who believe that although the constitution makes provision for a public officer to take a leave, the public officer has a say on the matter as well, therefore, government cannot impose the leave on the Auditor-General .

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“An examination of the law says that the individual has options to say that I can take part of this now or later and those are the issues that should have been brought on board. He should have been engaged and once he should have had an understanding of what it takes plus if the law says you forfeit and taken the leave at the end, how then do we have a situation of accumulated leave?”

“Given the current situation, we can consider the impact it may have if some other person decides that the Electoral Commission should go home on a leave. What will that mean for us? We need to think through these things carefully and not set precedence that will provide a context within which confusion can reign,” Mr. Senanu said.”

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The movement is, in view of this, requesting for the President reviews his decision.

“We think that this could have been handled much better. Because you see, why would anybody stay on the job if it is not to make sure that the right things are done?

“A person especially as Mr. Domelevo, we have no doubts as a civil society that this  is one of the strong leaders of our time who has constantly and consistently championed and made sure that the public purse is protected.

“We will be taking up the issue and by the middle of next week, you will hear us speaking on it, because we think if we don’t speak up, history will hold us accountable. This is not any of those things that we should be quiet about,” he said.