A senior lecturer at the University of Education at Winneba, Dr. Ahmed Jinapor, says the level of corruption in the country is attributable to the lack of a proper pension system for retirees in the country.
He argued on TV3 New Day Thursday that the absence of a rewarding pension scheme in the country pushes people to engage in corruption while in active service.
“We [Ghanaians] are not guaranteed of retirement, that is why we indulge in corruption. That is why a police officer on the street will take the bribe,” he contended.
The lecturer was contributing to newspaper discussions on the show on the alleged corruption at the Social Security and National Insurance Trust (SSNIT) which has led to the interdiction of its Manager of Management Information System, Caleb Afaglo. Mr Afaglo is accused of using fake academic certificates to get employment at the SSNIT, something he has since denied.
In a statement released on Wednesday, SSNIT said that “evidence made available to the Trust indicates that the university degrees presented by ‘Dr’ Afaglo to secure his employment at the Trust are fake.”
Touching on pensions in Ghana, Dr Jinapor urged Ghanaians to rally behind the government to fight for a guaranteed pension for workers in the country.
“If this current administration will do all it takes to guarantee the people of Ghana a retirement guarantee devoid of political witch-hunting, I am for it and every Ghanaian must support that,” he stated.
On the dismissal of Mr Afaglo, Dr Jinapor said that alone is “overly a simple punishment”.
“It’s serious crime because, when you look at his profile, he has experience…he has worked for several institutions, both private and public sector, and so, if his certificates are indeed fake, then it’s an indictment on our system, It’s an indictment on our audit system” he added.
Monetization of education
Dr. Jinapor explained that the springing up of numerous private universities whose interest is to make money is serious and must be checked because it contributes to the issue of fake academic certificates in the system.
“Looking at the number of private universities, it’s a cause to worry. Because of the monetization of the educational system, someone can get a degree with money and that is serious.
“That is why we have a number of people who claim to be doctors but they are fake,” he added.
A panel on the show who is a legal practitioner, Clara Beeri Kassertee, wondered whether the institution Afaglo claims to have obtained his academic credential exist or ever existed
“It is possible that the institution might have emanated but does not have accreditation to award that degree, so they [SSNIT] need to be clear on that” she advised.
Ms. Kassertee called on SSNIT to separate its administrative action from that of possible criminal actions, saying “what SSNIT can do is to take administrative action which would have followed the right procedure, but if SSNIT hasn’t done the right thing, he [Mr. Afaglo] should go to court”