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Special Prosecutor to approve wives & husbands for his staff

Any would be wife or husband of an employee of the Office of the Special Prosecutor (OSP) has to undergo proper scrutiny from the security agencies before being given the green light to go ahead with the marriage, says Office of the Special Prosecutor Regulations, 2018 (L.I. 2373).

The law also compels an employee who intends to get married to also notify the Special Prosecutor, Martin Amidu, not later than three months before the intended marriage.

The marriage would be approved when security clearance is given by the OSP.

Similarly, where the employee intends to marry a foreigner, the marriage shall be approved when security clearance is given by the OSP.

According to the Regulation, where in the opinion of the OSP, the marriage poses a security risk, the Special Prosecutor may disapprove of the marriage. If the employee insists on proceeding with the marriage irrespective of the disapproval of the Special Prosecutor, the Special Prosecutor may direct the employee to resign or be dismissed.

The Regulation further demands from any employee of the OSP involved in any matrimonial suit to notify the Office of the facts of the case.

Where the suit has the potential to discredit the employee, the OSP or the Government, that employee is expected to take steps to resolve that matter amicably, failing which the employee would be called upon to resign.

The Member of Parliament (MP) for Akatsi South, Bernard Ahiafor, moving the motion for the consideration and adoption of the Committee on Subsidiary Legislation on the Office of the Special Prosecutor Regulations, 2018 (L. I. 2373), Saturday, told Parliament the Regulations was drafted alongside that of the Bureau of National Investigations Regulations, 2015 (L. I. 2227) and therefore are in tandem with the BNI conditions.

The Chairman of the Constitutional, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs Committee who is also a member of the Subsidiary Legislation Committee, Ben Abdallah Banda, seconding the motion told the House that the Regulations are in order since if conforms to that of all the security agencies around the world.

According to him, a wife or husband of an employee of the Office of the Special Prosecutor head by Martin Amidu, must be able to keep secret.

The spouse, he added, must not be money conscious to be highly at risk of being bribed to divulge information to the public.

“The Office of the Special Prosecutor is dealing with high profile and sensitive information relating to investigations relating to prosecution. So, if the employee doesn’t get a spouse who can keep a secret relating to investigations and prosecution, the tendency is that all sensitive and secretive information will be given out. Secondly, the rationale behind the vetting of a potential spouse is that the Office must ensure that a spouse who is being married by an employee is somebody conscious. If you have somebody who is money conscious, the tendency is that the spouse can be susceptible to bribery and for which reason if the wife can easily be bribed, the tendency is that such a person can easily send information out”, he noted.

The Speaker, Rt. Hon. Prof. Aaron Michael Oquaye, commenting on the Regulation told the House that at one time, his wife who was a military officer needed permission from the rank and file of the Ghana Army to marry him.

He said the Regulation is universal and is applicable to all the security agencies around the world.

“Those who are not aware, this applies to the military and it applies to all the security agencies. You cannot just marry and you don’t have to be in the service. You have to resign if you want to be by all means go and do your own thing. It is as simple as that and it is universal and it applies to all these institutions. At time, my wife needed permission to marry me”, he posited.

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