Business News of Thu, 20 Apr 20179
EOCO joins probe of fraudulent withdrawal of allowance at YEA
The Economic and Organised Crime Office (EOCO) has been invited to probe alleged fraudulent drawing of allowance at the Youth Employment Agency (YEA). A total of 2,999 people are said to be drawing monthly allowances from the Agency for no work done.
YEA management has explained this costs the country huge sums that could have been used to expand the Agency’s work.
Speaking to Evans Mensah on Joy FM’s Top Story Thursday, acting YEA Deputy CEO, Bashiru Ibrahim, said they invited EOCO because of the nature of the issues they have uncovered at the Agency.
He said they have handed all the relevant documents to EOCO to aid its independent investigations into the matter.
A preliminary internal investigation by the current management of YEA disclosed some discrepancies and underhand dealings at the Agency. According to the Agency, a total of 208 beneficiaries were found to use the same E-Zwich numbers to withdraw their money and some of the beneficiaries are paid for no work done.
The Agency also revealed that there was the issue of non-payment of some beneficiaries since May 2016 that has led to huge arrears. In the face of this revelation, the Agency has suspended payment of beneficiaries allowances until after a comprehensive auditing of the account would be done.
Although sections of Ghanaians have expressed dissatisfaction with the development, Mr Ibrahim said the suspension of payment has saved the Agency a total of GHC1,067,700 per month.
He said they have also tasked the internal Audit Department at the Agency to conduct a nationwide investigation to catalogue the number of people working for it. "They are currently in the Northern Region doing the auditing over there," he said of the Internal Auditors.
But former YEA CEO, Kobina Beecham, told Joy News he engaged in no illegality within the two years he served as the head of the Agency.
He said he acted right to expand the programme, adding his integrity is intact.