Judgment Debt Commission to miss June deadline for completion of work

The Judgment Debt Commission is not likely to meet its June deadline for the completion of its work.

This, officials say is partly due to government’s delay in renovating the commission’s new office space.

In December 19th last year, fire destroyed the commission’s offices at the Old Parliament House – a day after it had adjourned public sittings.

The commission was expected to resume work on 6 January 2014.

Government later said in a statement: “urgent steps are being taken to find them temporary offices where they can continue their critical work for the state.”

But more than two months after the fire incident, the renovation work at the commission’s new offices located within the Constitutional Review Commission building at Cantoments in Accra is yet to be completed.

The large office spaces need to be partitioned with wood for various departments of the commission to have separate offices.

New computers, photocopiers, printers, stationery and recording equipments are needed. Cracks in the conference room roof also have to be fixed before staff members who have been home for the last three months can return to work.

Commission officials fear the slow pace of renovation work, compounded by the fact that work done over the last one year has been destroyed in the fire, would make meeting the June deadline impossible, hence require an extension.

Commission sources tell Joy news they are waiting until work resumes, for a decision to be taken on how much additional time would be required.

Reacting to the issues, Deputy Attorney General Dr. Domnic Ayine told Joy News the situation is as a result of the complex administrative procedures required in taking over government property.

He added: “it isn’t that the effort hasn’t been made, the effort is been made. And very soon, the Judgment Debt Commissioner would have an office space which is very well equipped in other to carry out his mandate.”

The Commission of Inquiry was established by the President John Mahama in November 2012 to investigate all judgment debts government has paid since 1992.

It was supposed to complete work by November last year, but the president granted it an extension till June this year due to large volumes of work that still needs to be done.

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