A petition has been brought before the Special Prosecutor, Martin Amidu, against former President John Dramani Mahama and his then-Chief of Staff, Julius Debrah.
The petitioners, who are part of a group known as the Centre for National Affairs, want the two investigated over an alleged transfer of over GHc40 million from Bulk Oil Storage and Transportation Company Limited (BOST) to the presidency between August 2015 and early January 2017.
“We wish to stand on provisions in the Office of the Special Prosecutor Act, 2017 (Act 959), Section 3(1a and 1b), which empowers your office to investigate and prosecute alleged or suspected corruption and corruption-related offences under the Criminal Offences Act, 1960 (Act 29), and any other relevant law involving public officers, politically exposed persons and persons in the private sector to call on your office to initiate an investigation into the said account.”
In an interview with Citi News, Executive Director for the Centre, Samuel Odame Lartey, alleged impropriety of the part of the two men, hence their demand for a probe.
They claimed the recipient’s account was Chief of Staff’s Sundries Account No. 1, with account number 1018631473188 at the Ghana Commercial Bank (GCB).
“Some GHc40.5 million was transferred into that particular account. Now what we want to do is try and understand why these amounts were transferred into this particular account and what the monies were used for,” Mr. Lartey said.
“I believe there should be more clarification and some documentation provided on these things to let Ghanaians know that indeed the monies that were entrusted to our politicians are used to serve the people,” he added.
According to a letter from the group, “letters covering the transfer suggests the transfer of funds is in respect of monies accrued from the security fees taken from Bulk Oil Distribution Companies (BDCs) invoices to effect payment on cost of petroleum products supplied by GOIL.”
The group feels the account is unlawful “as there is no statutory approval with regards to the said account in the public domain,” the group argued, adding that “the reasons for payment from BOST to be made into the said account and the nature and manner by which these monies were used are not known to the public.”
They also said they have reason to believe other state agencies were directed under the previous government to make payments into the said account.
The reason for such directives to be made is also unknown to the populace of this nation, according to the petitioners.
BOST has consistently found itself in the news for the wrong reasons, deepening growing public perception of deep-seated corruption at that stage agency.
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The MP had accused Managing Director of BOST, George Mensah Okley and his deputy, John Kojo Ankoful, of making the payment against the advice of BOST’s external lawyers.