General News of Thu, 4 Jan 2018226
NDC attempted to print GHC 1 billion cedis for 2016 campaign - Report
In its desperate bid to hang on to power, the National Democratic Congress (NDC) purportedly devised various means aimed at winning the 2016 general elections.
It has emerged that in the heat of the campaign towards the general elections, the then NDC government, led by President John Dramani Mahama, almost succeeded in printing a whopping GH¢1 billion into the system to finance the NDC campaign.
The deal, involving the printing of GH¢50 notes to the tune of GH¢1 billion, however, failed to go through at the eleventh hour because the official printer of Ghana’s currency in Europe – Crane – allegedly refused to get involved, citing criminality.
The surreptitious deal involved flooding the market with the extra cash, passing it through non-conventional means, for vote buying and other matters bordering on criminality.
The NDC operatives reportedly cooked the deal from the Flagstaff House in Accra and was said to have been done on the blind side of the Bank of Ghana (BoG), whose Governor at the time was Dr Abdul Nashiru Issahaku – a close associate of then President Mahama.
However, it is not clear whether the former Governor sanctioned the criminal idea, but according to sources, one of his deputies was neck-deep in the shady deal in collaboration with some senior appointees at the presidency at the time.
According to sources, National Security radar has picked the case for investigation.
The Flagstaff House elements at all material times were using the said deputy governor as the conduit for the alleged criminal deal and did not want it to go through the official banking processes of currency printing.
The huge amount was all supposed to be in GH¢50 denomination as insisted by the Flagstaff House kingpins, although the ‘connection man,’ a Nigerian whose name was given as Lukman Lawal, had advised that the printing should be done in smaller denominations like GH¢5 to avoid detection.
DAILY GUIDE has gathered that the said Lawal met officials of Crane – a Swedish firm believed to be in-charge of printing Ghana’s currency – several times in Geneva, Switzerland and London ahead of the supposed printing, but the key agent between Ghana and the printing firm refused, insisting it was a criminal action.
Later when the deputy governor was queried about the whole deal, he allegedly claimed that pressure was mounted on him from the Flagstaff House and mentioned a top Mahama aide, who is a former manager of a radio station, as one of the people behind the deal.
According to sources, the Nigerian was going to fly his private jet from Houston, Texas, United States, to meet the Crane officials and fly the money to Africa and would eventually use Ghana’s presidential jet to transfer it into the country from Nigeria – without the approval of the Customs Division of the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA).