Business News Fri, 26 Jul 2019
The Ghana Cocoa Board (COCOBOD) has defended the government’s $10 million expenditure on cocoa roads audit.The Communications Manager at COCOBOD, Fiifi Boafo told Citi News that the expenditure was necessary.
“Management was of the view that certain things were not clear and it was the need for us to have a better understanding of what we are committing state funds to…. For instance if a road that was supposed to cost $17 million balloon to $100 million and you take over as management and you want to go ahead and do it without asking questions or getting experts to advice you, and you go ahead, we do not think that is a better way of doing things,” he said in an interview on Eyewitness News.
Fiifi Boafo’s comment was in response to the position of the Minority in Parliament that the expenditure was illegal.
The Minority in Parliament made the statement following Government’s announcement of the re-commencement of some cocoa road projects with an allocation of GH¢3 billion, more than two years after the project was suspended for auditing.
Eric Opoku, Ranking Member on Food, Agriculture and Cocoa Affairs and member of the Minority who addressed the press conference on Thursday said;
“…What the Akufo-Addo government has succeeded in doing is to waste millions of the tax payer’s money on illegally procured audits not sanctioned by the Auditor General. We are aware that $10 million has been paid to one of such illegally procured private audit firms owned by a member of Akufo-Addo’s Council of State and at the right time, we shall make the chilling details available to the Ghanaian people,” he said.
He also questioned why “after almost three years in government, not a single official of the erstwhile Mahama administration or a single contractor has been indicted for any inflated, fraudulent or ghost cocoa road project,” since the audit was to expected to uncover fraud.