The Auditor-General, Daniel Domelevo, refused to accept keys to his office after the locks were changed, the Chairman of the Auditor Service Board, Prof Edward Dua Agyeman, has said.
Rather, he chose to film and share with the media a video of his inability to access his office with his old keys, Prof Agyeman who is also retired Auditor General claimed.
The video has marked further deterioration of the relationship between Daniel Domelevo and the audit board.
The Auditor-General has been out of office after he was compelled by the president to begin a mandatory leave the Presidency ordered in June.
He began his leave, amidst protest, on July 1. But on Wednesday, he returned to his office to pick some documents but found the locks changed.
In viral audio, he could be heard saying the locks had been changed. But the Audit Service Board Chairman insisted Mr. Domelevo was offered the key to his office but he rejected it.
The acting Auditor General informed me that Mr. Domelevo came to the office, went straight to his office, and couldn’t get in. So he [Domelevo] came back to inform him that he has not been given access to the place.
“He [Acting AG] explained to him that the Board asked him to secure the place and that the keys are with the cashier. So he could go for it. My information from the acting Auditor General is that he was very furious that we have locked the place and given the key to the cashier, so he wasn’t going for it,” Prof Dua Agyeman explained in a Joy News interview.
He insisted that while he was in office as Auditor General, the Board had the right to take measures to secure his office.
Asked about the problem with the lock, he said a day after he went on leave, Mr. Domelevo entered his office, “ and collected letterheads without telling the acting Auditor General that he was there.”
He agreed that while it was his office, “somebody is acting for him, and, therefore, anytime he wants to come to the office, courtesy” demanded that he informed the person about visiting the office
“You don’t just go there, take anything you want and go back without even … Now the Acting Auditor General is acting for and on behalf of the board, and also the service,” he explained.
He condemned Mr. Domelevo’s penchant for running to the media with the least excuse.
“The locks were changed on the instruction of the board. Mr. Domelevo still has access to the place. He doesn’t have to go to radio stations anytime there is a small problem.”
On whether Mr. Domelevo can enter his office while on leave, he said there was no restraint for him not to do so, but he should out of courtesy inform the acting Auditor General about it.
“He cannot go there during the day, night or any other time without… He wouldn’t know where the keys are. As Auditor General, we don’t keep keys. As Auditor General, I never kept my keys. The keys are kept by our secretaries or whoever cleans the place,” he said.
Asked about why Mr Domelevo was not informed about the changing of the lock, he said “he was on leave and when he came, he [Domelevo] should have gone to meet the acting [Auditor-General].
Mr. Domelevo passed by his office on Tuesday, July 28, to pick up a document, while serving his compulsory 167 days leave.
But to his surprise, the locks to his office had been changed making it impossible for him to gain access.
“The key cannot even enter. It was flat like this and they have changed it to this one,” the Auditor-General said in a leaked video while attempting to open his office,” he said in an audio recording making rounds.
Mr. Domelevo had been engaged in a war of words over a directive from the Presidency for him to proceed on a four-month leave.
The Auditor-General had responded to the letter insisting that his previous leave entitlement had been forfeited and that he was only entitled to the 2020 leave.
But the Presidency in a response to Mr. Domelevo said he should add the 2020 leave to the accumulated one, bringing the total to 167.
The erstwhile Mahama administration appointed Mr. Domelevo in December 2016.
Opinion on the government’s decision to compel the state’s chief auditor to proceed on leave has been divided.
Some 500 Civil Society Organization (CSOs) registered their displeasure over the president’s order.
They described the president’s action as inconsistent with the 1992 constitution and ‘gravely weakens the President’s fight against corruption and his standing in the eyes of the international community as someone committed to public accountability.’
The group launched a social media campaign with hashtag #BringBackDomelevo to mount pressure on the government to rescind its decision.
But the government in response to their petition said it would not budge as the move was a legal one.
“The president encourages people to be citizens and not spectators, and therefore, your petition is welcome, and its contents have been duly noted.
“However, the position of the president as contained in the letter dated July 3, 2020, from this office to the Auditor General remains the same,” the Presidency said in a statement.
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