General News of 2013-12-09

Drill Ship culprits must provide intelligent answers - Adams

To many, Ambassador Chris Kpodo’s testimony at the Judgment Debt Commission has absolved Hon. Kan Dapaah and Hon. Kwabena Tahir Hammond, Minister of Energy and Deputy Minister of Energy respectively, of the erstwhile Kufuor Administration, who spearheaded the sale of the state owned Drill ship, of any wrong doing.

But Deputy General Secretary of the ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC) has strongly posited that Ghanaians should not pretend there was nothing wrong with the circumstances leading to the sale of the Drill Ship, Discoverer 511.

“…are you telling me that on the face of all the documents available, that Kan Dapaah himself wrote to President Kufuor then, that the people were ready to accept $12 million then….and that, he was insisting that the committee was sent to negotiate directly with them in France, instead of negotiating with their African representative, who was based in Kenya”.

“…and that, they want to negotiate directly because they beat it further down, below the $12 million?...Finally, you withdraw from the defense and then you go and get a default judgement, then you end up saying that the very people who willing to accept $12 million, which we (Gov’t of Ghana) were hoping to bargain downwards, ended up taking $19.5 million and you say there is nothing wrong with this?” he asked rhetorically.

What the NDC deputy General Secretary found more unsettling, he said, was the report that the organization that did the valuation of the Drill Ship were agents of the eventual buyers.

Kofi Adams was speaking on CitiFM’s “Big Issues” on the never-ending saga of the sale of Discoverer 511 and the whereabouts of the proceeds that accrued from the sale.

He called for more intelligent answers to be provided as he considers reasons for the sale of the Drill Ship untenable. He insists after the dissolution of the Board of Governors of the Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC), some actions were taken which amounted to an illegality since those decisions demanded the express consent of a Board.

He further added that “it was always going to be easy following the trail of the $3.5 million and that really should not be the issue but the way and manner in which negotiations were done”.