President John Mahama has accused some critics of hiding behind social media to peddle inaccurate information about his government and also hurl lies at his administration.
Mr Mahama complained that his appointees are always attacked on social media by anonymous accounts on social media, especially when issues of corruption are topical.
According to Mr Mahama, people use corruption as political propaganda without backing their claims with facts.
Speaking to a gathering of Ghanaian citizens living in London recently, President Mahama said: “Perception can be heightened because it’s been discussed long in the media. And when you have a country like Ghana where everybody is free to discuss corruption, if you wake up and you are angry with your husband or wife, you take it out on the president, abuse him on the radio. When you have that kind of society, there are all kinds of issues that come up,” adding that: “And then we have the addition of social media. Because of the anonymity, people just fix some blatant lies and put it on WhatsApp. And, sometimes, they are so creative, and I said these people the way they are creative, if they channel this creativity into lucrative things Ghana would not be where it is.”
“They would create something about you and if it is not because I am myself and I know that it is not true, anybody who sees it would believe it. We have all that floating in the system and all that, so, it heightens people’s perception about corruption. And, so, it is easy to say that there is more corruption in this regime than in that regime. Where would comparison of corruption take us? It won’t take us anywhere,” he emphasised.
The president further said: “The important thing is to put in the systems that prevent corruption taking place. I have the political willingness to expose it and investigate it and sanction it and I have said I am willing if any allegations are made. A lot of times somebody comes and says: ‘Oh this guy, he is stealing,’ and I ask him: ‘How do you know?’ [And he replies:] ‘You put your ears on the ground. Your ministers are all thieves.’
‘Which one? Tell me so that I can get the person.’ ‘Na wonnte – to wit – [Don’t you hear?] You don’t listen. You are not listening to these things.’
“You know, you need to deal with it in a more systematic manner and that’s why we are putting in place a legislation that protects whistle blowers, because whistle blowers are important,” he said.
Mr Mahama assured Ghanaians that the Attorney General’s (AG) Department was working on the Whistle Blower’s Amendment Bill and Witness Protection Scheme for easy flow of information.
“The person who sees corruption happening, you must put in the regulation that ensures that when he has blown the whistle, he is protected,” he said.