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General News Wed, 27 Nov 2002

Bagbin Causes Financial Loss To The State?

An audit report into the activities of the Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority (GPHA) has faulted the Minority Leader and a former member of the GPHA board, Alban Bagbin for causing the loss of over nine million cedis to the authority. A copy of the draft report available to the local radio station Joy FM shows ?9 million was spent on Mr. Bagbin’s election campaign in 1996 and 2000.

Over ?18 million was also paid to the MP for the procurement of some machinery for a women’s group in his constituency. But some of the equipment were not supplied while Mr. Bagbin demanded ?4 million cedis out of the amount.

The draft report says Mr. Bagbin used his influence as a board member and member of the then government to circumvent all control procedures in the allocation of vehicles. He thus succeeded in using company vehicles for his campaigns with GPHA, paying the allowances of drivers in his care.

The ?9 million financial loss caused by Mr. Bagbin according to the draft report, included ?5 million lost as a result of an accident involving one of the authority’s vehicles, which was written off. The vehicle was bought for 16 million but after the accident the insurance company paid ?11 million.

Acting Auditor General Edward Dua- Agyeman told Joy FM that the draft report has been forwarded to the MP for his comments before the report is finalised.

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But Mr. Bagbin who is also the MP for Nadowli North says the timing of the release of the said report is deliberate. In apparent reference to his criticisms on the IFC Loan, Mr Bagbin told Joy FM that government sources have on different occasions released this same information anytime he criticises the government.

He did not confirm or deny whether he caused financial loss to the state but noted that “the Auditor General was so blinded by his enthusiasm, his zeal to get at me that the statements that he made are not supported by documents.”

The acting Auditor General has denied any political links to his action. He told Joy FM that he is only seeking the Minority Leader’s comment in order to finalise the report of the auditor- James Quagraine & Co. But Alban Bagbin disagrees.

Source: JoyOnline
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