University of Education Winneba
University of Education Winneba

The alleged breaches of the provisions of the Public Procurement Act 2003 (Act 663) (PPA) as amended, in the award of contracts at the University of Education, Winneba (UEW), may not be limited to UEW alone.

Almost all public entities, not just universities or polytechnics, might have contravened the provisions of the PPA. Most public appointees, run the public set ups they find themselves in, as if those entities were their personal properties. Most public servants have no iota of respect for the public who patronise the service the entity in question, provide.
Fees and other charges are levied without recourse to the laws regulating the system. No valid receipts are issued after payment is effected to ensure proper accountability.

Currently, about 3 state owned entities are in the news, for possible violations of the PPA and issuance of fake receipts to members of the public. These are the Electoral Commission (EC), the University of Education, Winneba (UEW), and the Tepa Nurses Training College (TNTC).

The above, may just be a tip of the iceberg. There could more rot elsewhere.
Just this week, Vice Chancellors Ghana (VCG), issued a statement, in an attempt to state their position on the current developments at UEW. In that statement, they ignored the possible PPA violations by the concerned officials, but rather dwelt on the other issue (the award of certificates, diplomas, and degrees; and appointments and promotions undertaken by the defunct governing council).
This to some extent, points in the direction that, they may also have possible PPA violations in their cupboards.
It is proposed that, the administration of President Nana Akufo Addo, as a matter of urgency, send forensic auditors to all state owned entities to carry out forensic audits. All state owned entities, that gets government subvention, must be included in this audit.
Besides this, all revenue, payable to state owned entities, must be paid into the consolidated fund, out of which a remission maybe made by the government back to the entity to undertake pre-approved projects/ventures.

The government should call the bluff of some Trade Unions, who are vehemently opposed to this idea, and implement it without delay. A Trade Union has no business, telling the government, how its revenue should be received, unless that Trade Union, is a beneficiary of the looted Internally Generated Funds (IGF). So far as the remittance to the state owned entity is done on time, that suffices.

The leakages at the ports, which the government is trying hard to block, might be peanuts, when compared to what is being lost at most of these public entities.
IGF has led to so many needless deaths. Most public officials, who attempt to challenge those controlling the IGF, at their various workplaces, are ‘cleverly’ eliminated. Either they are transferred to remote branches of the entity, if they are lucky, or in other circumstances, they are framed up and dismissed. In the extreme situation, the incorruptible officials who challenge the corrupt officials, die under mysterious circumstances.
Therefore, by taking IGF out of the control of all state entities, those who stand out to protect the state coffers, will be saved from the jaws of these marauding ‘hyenas’.

Those public officials found to have misappropriated public funds, should be made to reimburse the state with interest, have their properties confiscated to the state, and finally serve a prison term. There are already laws in place to guide all the above outlined measures to deter public servants from looting and sharing state funds. What is left, is the will-power to implement theses laws.

If the government is able to implement the above proposed measures, the uncalled for rivalry to get appointed as public hospitals Chief Executive Officers (CEOs), Chief Accountants of Public Universities, Bursars of Senior High Schools, etc, would be a thing of the past. There will be very little funds left to misappropriate.

This country is being raped to death, by some ‘terminal’ and ‘cancerous’ degree holders, and not the unemployed, who are desperately trying to survive on a daily basis, by hawking around the tollbooths or engaged in kayayei in our big markets, who the tax net, has not roped in.
These ‘terminal’ and ‘cancerous’ degree holders, to a greater extent, are the cause of the unemployment situation in the country. This is because, they siphon so much from the state coffers, to a level that, not much is left for the government to implement viable policies, geared towards curtailing the unemployment rate in the country.
The Oduman Community Clinic for example, which is state owned, and located at Ablekuma, has a reputation for charging exorbitant fees, even with a patient having a valid National Health Insurance Scheme Card (NHIS). The government needs to audit this clinic and all other public entities without delay! The nearby communities to this clinic, finds it economically wise, to travel over 10 miles to Amasaman hospital for medical attention, instead of the community based Oduman clinic. What is the essence of putting up a community clinic, if the local population can’t afford its services? It is clear that, most of the fees charged by Oduman clinic, are likely to be illegal!

The state funds looters, have infected mother Ghana, with cancer, and this has led to mother Ghana, being terminally ill.
The time to clean this rot, that stinks to high heaven, is now, otherwise, the cancer inflicted on it by the corrupt public officials, is likely to ‘end mother Ghana’s life’!!

Alhassan Salifu Bawah
(son of a peasant farmer)