General News of 2013-12-03

Kwakye Ofosu damns Awuni over Merchant Bank sale controversy

Deputy Information Minister, Felix Kwakye-Ofosu, is accusing Andrew Awuni, head of the Centre for Freedom and Accuracy and former presidential spokesperson of double standards.

He does not understand why Awuni would wage a crusade against the sale of Merchant Bank to Fortiz when he staunchly supported the sale of Ghana Telecom to Vodafone under the Kufuor regime.

Andrew Awuni is in court challenging the sale of Merchant to Fortiz. He said the transaction is nothing but a rip-off of the Ghanaian tax payer.

In a new suit filed at the Commercial Court, Awuni's group, Centre for Freedom and Accuracy is asking 13 defendants to explain their respective roles in the impending sale of Merchant Bank to Fortiz Equity Fund.

But Deputy Information Minister Felix Kwakye-Ofosu has expressed surprise at the crusading role being played by Awuni.

Speaking on Asempa FM's Ekosii-sen programme, Tuesday, Kwakye-Ofosu threw a challenge at people to search the internet comments made by Andrew Awuni in support of the sale of Ghana Telecom to Vodafone.

He said Awuni who was then spokesperson to President John Kufuor vehemently supported the sale in 2008 only to turn around and go to court in 2013 to challenge the sale of Merchant Bank to Fortiz.

He said the action by Awuni only seemed to suggest that it is only the New Patriotic Party that had the right to sell state-owned companies and that any attempt by another government to sell a state property is illegal.

That "inconsistency," Kwakye Ofosu maintained is "surprising."

The Deputy Information Minister later turned his criticism on Joy FM and Myjoyonline.com, accusing the two Multimedia Group business units of false reportage.

The two published a story in which President John Mahama was said to have questioned Merchant Bank for going after Engineers & Planners, a company owned by Ibrahim Mahama, brother to the president when the bank attempted to retrieve debts owed it the company.

Felix Kwakye-Ofosu insisted the publication, especially, the headline was without basis.

He accused the units of violating basic journalistic tenets and demanded an apology.