The Culture of Political Corruption
It would be idle to ignore the existence of bribery and corruption in many walks of life in the Gold Coast admitted to us by every responsible African to whom we addressed the question. That it may spread as further responsibility devolves upon the African is a possibility which cannot be denied.
Watson Commission, 19481
Massive material corruption seems to have taken hold of the new class of (West) African politicians and their followers since they began to come into power. It is so widespread as to be universal, at least in this area.
Legon Observer, 19662
In 1969, it was reliably reported that a quarter of all Ghana's consumption of cigarettes was satisfied by smuggling.... On top of that, a third of all drugs and supplies of the Ministry of Health are, at a conservative estimate, stolen or diverted. Were it not for the laws of libel, it would be very easy to give much more concrete and impressive evidence of the importance of corruption in Ghana.
M. J. Sharpston, 19703
We Ghanaians are so accustomed to bribing our officials, and they to stealing our rate-moneys, that it would be considered odd if we didn't bribe and they didn't steal.
Mr. J., former Ghanaian official, 19714
The above quotation from the report of the Watson Commission shows that as early as 1948 political corruption was seen by some Ghanaian observers as a cause for concern. The other quotations, taken together, attest to a commonly held view that by the end of the 1960s Ghana had developed what we term a culture of political corruption. It had been a long time in the making, but by then its outlines were unmistakable. Bribery, graft, nepotism, favoritism, and the like had become commonplace at all levels of officialdom; and