Parliament passes the Office of the Special Prosecutor Bill


The Office of the Special Prosecutor Bill, 2017, has been passed into law by Ghana’s Parliament.

This was after the Attorney-General and Minister for Justice, Hon. Gloria Akuffo, had moved a motion for the Bill to be read a third time in Parliament.

The Bill seeks to establish the Office of the Special Prosecutor as a specialised agency to investigate specific cases of corruption involving public officers, politically exposed persons, and persons in the private sector involved in the commission of corruption. Such offences will  be prosecuted on the authority of the Attorney-General.

The House approved the third reading of the 79-Clause Bill, on Tuesday November 14, 2017. ‘Honourable Members, the Office of the Special Prosecutor Bill, 2017, duly read the third time and passed’, the first deputy Speaker, Hon. Joseph Osei-Owusu announced.


Presenting the Memorandum to the Bill on the floor of Parliament, the Minister said the establishment of the Office of the Special Prosecutor has become necessary in view of the institutional bottlenecks that impede the fight against corruption.

She indicated that the monopoly of prosecutorial authority by an Attorney-General, who is hired and could be fired by the President, has been singled out by governance experts as one of the key factors that stands in the way of using law enforcement and prosecution as a credible tool in the fight against corruption.

The Minister also stated that to this end, the government intends to establish, by an Act of Parliament, an Office of the Special Prosecutor to investigate and prosecute certain categories of cases and allegations of corruption and other criminal acts, including those involving alleged violations of the Public Procurement Act, 2003 (Act 663), and cases implicating public officers and politically exposed persons.

She said the establishment of the Office for the purpose of prosecuting corruption cases would undoubtedly yield positive results. This will be an important deviation from a multi-purpose or mixed mandate as is the case with the Economic and Organised Crime Office (EOCO).

The Minister intimated that the Bill therefore seeks to vest the Special Prosecutor with the authority and control required to effectively investigate and prosecute cases of corruption and restore public confidence in the justice delivery system and by extension the government.

Briefing the House on the report of the Committee on Constitutional, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs on the Office of the Special Prosecutor Bill, the Chairman of the Committee, Hon. Ben Abdallah Banda, informed Parliament that the Committee subjected all the provisions in the Bill to strict scrutiny.

He reiterated that the Bill was so scrutinised to ensure that its passage will lead to the establishment of an effective and operationally independent entity that will effectively contribute to efforts aimed at combating corruption.


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