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Special prosecutor nominee: Akufo-Addo keeps faith with “Anas Principle”

President Akufo-Addo, the originator of the expression “the Anas Principle”, has lived up to his own invention by appointing Kissi Agyebeng as special prosecutor

With the nomination and subsequent appointment as Ghana’s next special prosecutor of Kissi Agyebeng – a firm supporter of the Anas Aremeyaw Anas investigative model and legal advisor to the Tiger Eye PI team – President Akufo-Addo, the originator of the expression “the Anas Principle”, has kept faith with his invention.

The Anas Principle is based on the method of probing used by Anas Aremeyaw Anas, one of Africa’s most respected investigative journalists, who through undercover observation has unearthed acts of corruption in almost every Ghanaian state institution.


In the lead-up to the 2012 presidential elections in Ghana, speaking on Thursday 11 October 2012, the then candidate Akufo-Addo, addressing students of the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology on the topic “Why Ghana cannot afford corruption”, noted that one of the measures an Akufo-Addo government would use to fight against corruption when voted into office would be to institutionalise what he described as “the ‘Anas Principle’ to create a culture of positive fear to discourage corrupt practices”, especially in the public service and among government appointees.

The principle

The “Anas Principle”, Nana Addo explained in his address to the KNUST students, would aim to establish a special squad within established anti-corruption agencies, “made up of some of our best young talents, who will be well trained and well disciplined”, to keep the fight against corruption alive everywhere in the country.

He explained that the principle will infect the disciples of corruption with fear and paranoia, “in that you may never know that the person you are giving the bribe to or receiving it from may be an undercover agent”.

Throwing more light on the principle, Akufo-Addo explained that a special anti-corruption squad would be given licence to root out corruption in all areas of public life in Ghana.

Keeping faith

As president of the republic, some nine years after coining the term and proposing the “Anas Principle”, President Akufo-Addo has nominated and is on course to appoint Kissi Agyebeng to lead the country’s efforts to fight corruption.

Agyebeng, a respected legal practitioner, is known to have defended the work, modus operandi and findings of investigations carried out by Anas Aremeyaw Anas.

He has also worked as legal counsel to Anas’s Tiger Eye PI team.

SP nominee on Anas Principle

At his vetting by Parliament’s appointments committee on Thursday (22 July 2021), the special prosecutor nominee, Kissi Agyebeng, told the committee that he intends, if given the nod, to employ undercover investigation (the Anas Principle) as one of his tactics to expose individuals who engage in corruption in Ghana.

“I fully subscribe to the ‘Anas Principle’ and I am going to use it,” he told the appointments committee. “I have already stated that I will be engaging investigative journalists in respect to my work if given the nod.

“I say so because I have intimated that corruption is so secretive and complex [that] unless the participants are coming to you to report themselves, it is almost impossible to find out.

“Now, if someone can go underground and, through a sting operation, come out with some evidence which has probative value, I am all for it and I am going to use it,” Agyebeng said.

Wilberforce Asare

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