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General News Sun, 30 Apr 2017

GHS auctions Mitsubishi ambulance for GHC350; PAC raises red flag

A Mitsubishi Ambulance belonging to the Ghana Health Service (GHS) that was auctioned at GHC350.00 has incurred the wrath of the Public Accounts Committee (PAC).

The Committee does not understand why the said vehicle could be sold at such a low price, wondering what constituted in the determination of the price tag on the said vehicle which was disposed off by the GHS in 2012.

In the view of the panel, the country could have even earned more from the said vehicle if it had been sold to scrap dealers on the road side.

Officials of the GHS had appeared before the PAC, Thursday, April 27, 2017, to respond to some queries raised by the Auditor-General in its 2016 report over some vehicles that were disposed off by the GHS from 2011 and 2013 when they made the disclosure much to the displeasure of the panel.

The Auditor-General in its 2016 report raised several queries against the GHS over nine auctions it carried out from 2011 to 2013 is some selected regions of the country.

For instance, an amount of GHC45,650 and GHC30,210 being proceeds realized from the auctions carried in 2012 by two auctioneers and paid to the GHS Head Office Accountant were not paid into the Non –Tax Revenue Account as directed in the Authorization Letter from the Office of the President.

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That notwithstanding, Shelter Mart, who realized GHC44,125.00 from the auction he carried out failed to account for the said money. It was until when the GHS wrote to him on June 12, 2013 to remind him of the unpaid auction proceeds before he paid GHC5,000 on June 14, 2013 and GHC2,000 on July 4, 2013 respectively.

According to the Auditor-General, as at the time of the audit, the remaining balance of GHC34,625 had still not been paid by Shelter Mart.

The queries raised by the Auditor-General were necessitated by a review of the files on the disposed vehicles by the GHS.

The Director of Administration, GHS, who responded to the issues, told the Committee that the Service is worried about the conduct of Shelter Mart.

What is even more worrying, he noted, was the fact that a Mitsubishi Ambulance was auctioned for GHC350.00, an amount together with some other proceeds still in possession of the auctioneer.

A visibly worried Chairman of the PAC, Hon. James Klutse Avedzi, asked officials of the GHS if the said vehicle had all its four tyres in good condition at the time it was been disposed off.

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It is however, not clear whether the PAC will invite officials of STC that conducted the valuation exercise to brief the Committee why they arrived at pricing the Mitsubishi Ambulance GHC350.00.

Below is a list of vehicles that were auctioned by the GHS at its offices in Tamale in the Northern Region:



Source: kasapafmonline.com