Mahama used Ford gift to ‘smuggle’ money for 2012 campaign – Amidu
Former Attorney General, Martin Amidu, has alleged that the Ford Expedition car gifted President John Mahama in 2012 by a Burkinabe contractor, was part of a plot to smuggle money into the country to fund the Mahama 2012 campaign for the presidency.
Mr. Amidu, who spoke in a video message, said his claim is based on a letter from the Ghana Embassy in Burkina Faso to the border authorities at Paga, dated 29th October, 2012.
According to him, after President Mahama had assumed office following former President John Evans Atta Mill’s death, he was heading into the elections of 2012 “unprepared financially.”
“However, the President’s friend and beneficiary of contracts, when the President had assumed office, was ready to provide financial support,” the former AG narrated.
He indicated that the only way funds could be unconstitutionally imported into Ghana from Burkina Faso was to be “ingenious through the Ford Expedition and a wrapper, wrapping the many dollars needed for the Mahama Campaign. No searches, no questions.”
Mr. Amidu added that the money would have been “retrieved from the vehicle in Accra and the Ford Expedition is useless thereafter to the President.”
CHRAJ investigation a farce
Mr. Amidu also slammed the Commission on Human rights and Administrative Justice’s (CHRAJ) investigation into the Ford gift saga as a sham.
“CHRAJ has no jurisdiction but the President was too happy to have his own institution purport to clear him – a farce to make the public believe the President has the people’s interests at heart and that his institutions will protect the public purse. But all this while, it covered an unconstitutional scheme at election time,” Mr Amidu stated.
Earlier in 2016, President Mahama came under intense public criticism for accepting the Ford gift worth about US$100,000 allegedly to influence him when he was vice President in 2012.
The Burkinabe contractor in question, Djibril Kanazoe, admitted giving President Mahama the Ford Expedition vehicle, for which the President called to thank him.
The gift, according to reports, was prior to an attempt by the contractor, to win a bid to execute the Dodo Pepeso-Nkwanta road construction project.
The same contractor had also been contracted to build a wall, at a cost of over half a million dollars, for the Ghana Embassy in Ouagadougou.
CHRAJ, following its investigation of the matter, stated that President Mahama breached the gift policy when he accepted the gift.
The Commission, however, stated that the President’s action did not constitute a conflict of interest, bribery or fraud, as the petitioners to it, the youth wing of the Convention People’s Party (CPP), and the Progressive People’s Party (PPP), had claimed.