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Akufo-Addo sees no evil and hears no evil – NDC

Thu, 6 Feb 2020 Source: Ghana Crusader

National Communication Officer of the opposition NDC has described President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo as a leader who sees no evil and hears no evil when it comes to thievery and corruption.

The president, he said, has proven to be the biggest enabler and promoter of corruption in the history of Ghana which prompted foreign missions in the country to voice its their concerns.

According to him, following the complaints from the ambassadors and foreign envoys, President Akufo-Addo attempted to gag them from expressing their concerns when he warned foreign envoys not to speak publicly about the alarming heights of corruption has reached under his administration.

At a press conference he addressed at the NDC headquarters, Sammy Gyamfi said, “Whether it was the Ameri-Mytelinous scandal in which President Akufo-Addo gave executive approval for a deal which was inflated by an amount of US$800 million or the BOST scandal where five (5) million litres of contaminated fuel was illegally sold to unlicensed businesses and the proceeds misappropriated, or the PPA scandal or the Australia Visa Fraud scandal or the “#12” scandal or Galamsey Fraud” scandal, or the PDS scandal which caused this nation a huge financial loss of US$190 million, President Akufo-Addo has proven to be the biggest enabler and promoter of corruption in the history of Ghana.”

“This fact is buttressed by the latest Corruption Perception Index (CPI) of Transparency International, in which Ghana dropped two (2) places and the recent Afrobarometer findings by CDD-GH, that 53% of Ghanaians think corruption has worsened under the Akufo-Addo-led government.”

“In all this, it is important to remind the NPP that per the latest CPI of Transparency International, the most reputable and internationally recognized corruption index, President Akufo-Addo’s best score of 41 points is far worse than President Mahama’s worst score of 43 points which was recorded in the year 2016 before the NDC exited office.”



Full statement below:

A PRESS CONFERENCE ADDRESSED BY COMRADE SAMMY GYAMFI, NATIONAL COMMUNICATION OFFICER OF THE NDC, ON THE AIRBUS SE CASE AND LATEST SCANDALOUS REVELATIONS OF MASSIVE ROT IN AKUFO-ADDO’S FAILED “GALAMSEY” FIGHT

INTRODUCTION

Good afternoon friends from the media.

We thank you for honouring our invitation at such short notice. We are grateful for your indulgence whenever necessity calls on us to serve our nation.

The purpose of today’s press conference is twofold. First, we will address the judgements of the Crown Court of Southwark, England and the District Court of Columbia in a case involving Airbus SE, the giant aircraft manufacturers.

Second, we will speak on the latest revelations of massive corruption and thievery in Akufo-Addo’s so-called fight against “galamsey”.

THE AIRBUS SCANDAL Ladies and gentlemen of the press, Last Sunday, the much respected former Attorney General, Mrs. Marietta Brew Appiah- Opong issued a statement which primarily sought to correct the mischievous twist to the approved judgements of the Crown Court of Southwark and the District Court of Columbia involving Airbus SE.

She basically stated, that reports by a section of the media that Airbus paid bribes to the government of Ghana between 2009 and 2015 are false and do not reflect the Approved Judgements.

Ladies and gentlemen, the said investigation was triggered by a complaint from competitors of Airbus over suspected violation of OECD rules by the company.

A careful reading of the approved judgments of the Crown Court of Southwark and the District Court of Columbia on the matter shows that the entire case is about legal infractions by employees and agents of Airbus and nothing more.

According to the approved judgments of the Crown Court of Southwark and the District Court of Columbia:

Airbus on their own accord, engaged intermediaries or better still hired agents to help them sell military aircrafts to Ghana between the years 2009 and 2015. While the use of agents or business partners is common practice with multinational companies, the approved judgments held that Airbus failed to follow OECD rules in appointing their business intermediaries. The approved judgments further found, that payment by Airbus of success-based commission to their intermediaries was in excess of the agreed 5% commission as captured in the transaction Agreement. Whereas, there have been claims that success-based commissions were paid to agents of Airbus with the intent to induce or reward improper favour by the said “government official 1”, it is instructive to note, that there is no indication either in the approved judgments of the Crown Court of Southwark or the District Court of Columbia that any such inducement took place. Now let’s be clear about the facts: First, no ex-government official of Ghana is cited in any part of the approved judgments for receiving a bribe or committing any offence.

In fact, not even the unnamed “government official 1” is cited in the report or approved judgement for demanding or receiving a bribe or for committing any offence.



This point becomes even clearer when juxtaposed with the facts narrated in the approved judgment of the Crown Court of Southwark with regard to countries like Malaysia, Indonesia and Taiwan, where the UK SFO made findings on how bribes were actually disbursed to senior executives of Airline companies.

We can state with a large degree of certainty that the UK SFO would have stated that bribes were paid to the said “government official 1” if they had found so in their investigations.

Instead, they carefully chose the words “intended to induce” without more. And there is no indication that this intention was actualized. Therefore, to the extent that the said: “government official 1” is not cited for any offence in any of the approved judgments, his or her identity is totally immaterial.

Second, there is no finding in any of the approved judgments that Ghana lost any money through the said transactions. No such finding is contained in any of the approved judgments.

The fact is, government of Ghana paid fair commercial value for the aircrafts and was not in any way shortchanged.

Indeed, the Ghana Airforce conducted its own independent technical and financial evaluation of the transactions in line with best practices of the Military.

Third, there is no finding in any of the approved judgments that the transactions and the processes leading to same, violated any law.

In fact, the first transaction under which success-based commission was paid by Airbus to their intermediaries, adhered to the Public Procurement law and received the legal opinion of the then-Attorney General before it was finally approved by the August House of Parliament.

Additionally, there is no finding in any of the approved judgements, that the government of Ghana or any government official, engaged the services of or paid any monies to any intermediary relative to the said transactions.

Therefore, any infractions arising from the engagement and payment of intermediaries by Airbus SE are entirely its business.

Distinguished friends from the media, it is clear from the foregoing that, the whole Airbus case is about legal infractions by employees and agents of Airbus, a private company. Foreign companies who do business with Ghana have their own internal modus operandi.

The nature of the infractions committed by Airbus SE as contained in the approved judgments are such that, the government of Ghana could not have known at the time of the transaction.

Ladies and Gentlemen, the indecent haste with which Yaw Buaben Asamoa of the NPP jumped to pass judgment on the NDC was pathetic and most reckless to say the least.

No serious-minded person would draw conclusions based on conjecture and willful misinterpretation of the Approved Judgement of the UK Crown Court.

And so we treat with contempt his statements and those of other NPP hirelings who may have thought wrongly that this was an opportunity for political equalization.

Ladies and gentlemen, the Airbus matter is nothing like the recent conclusively established corruption cases, such as the doling out of a whopping GHS136 million for the private hotel project of the in-law of President Akufo-Addo, Dr. Nyantakyi, the missing excavators scandal, the missing 400 tricycles scandal, just to mention a few.

The NPP should be reminded that multiple Ambassadors from Western nations have in recent times publicly decried the alarming spate of corruption under President Akufo-Addo.

Strangely, President Akufo-Addo only few weeks ago, shamelessly warned ambassadors and foreign envoys in Ghana not to speak publicly about the alarming heights corruption has reached under his administration.

Whether it was the Ameri-Mytelinous scandal in which President Akufo-Addo gave executive approval for a deal which was inflated by an amount of US$800 million or the BOST scandal where five (5) million litres of contaminated fuel was illegally sold to unlicensed businesses and the proceeds misappropriated, or the PPA scandal or the Australia Visa Fraud scandal or the “#12” scandal or Galamsey Fraud” scandal, or the PDS scandal which caused this nation a huge financial loss of US$190 million.

President Akufo-Addo has proven to be the biggest enabler and promoter of corruption in the history of Ghana.

This fact is buttressed by the latest Corruption Perception Index (CPI) of Transparency International, in which Ghana dropped two (2) places and the recent Afrobarometer findings by CDD-GH, that 53% of Ghanaians think corruption has worsened under the Akufo-Addo-led government.

In all this, it is important to remind the NPP that per the latest CPI of Transparency International, the most reputable and internationally recognized corruption index, President Akufo-Addo’s best score of 41 points is far worse than President Mahama’s worst score of 43 points which was recorded in the year 2016 before the NDC exited office.

PRESIDENT AKUFO-ADDO’S FAILED FIGHT AGAINST “GALAMSEY” AND THE MISSING 500 EXCAVATORS SCANDAL

Let us now look at the organized thievery and acts of corruption perpetrated by the Akufo-Addo government on the people of Ghana under the guise of fighting “Galamsey”.

Ladies and gentlemen of the press, in the past couple of days, the public discourse in our country has been dominated by a rather unimaginable tale of over 500 Excavators seized from illegal mining sites, which have suddenly disappeared into thin air.

As scandalous as we thought the story of the missing 500 excavators was, the chilling and sordid revelations that have come to light since that scandal broke out go to confirm the massive rot that has characterized President Akufo-Addo’s so-called fight against “Galamsey” in the last three (3) years.

You would recall that at the fourth edition of our Moment of Truth series, we decried how the fight against “galamsey” was being undermined by top NPP and government officials, and called for the complete overhaul of the Inter-Ministerial Committee against Illegal Mining.

Sadly, it has taken the recent case of the missing 500 excavators to awaken the nation to the reality of the concerns we raised back then.

This week, we have been told of the arrest of a known kingpin embedded in the anti-galamsey machinery of the state, whose nefarious activities have long spelt doom for the fight against 'galamsey'. We are talking here about the Vice Chairman of the NPP in the Central Region, Mr. Horace Ekow Ewusi, and five other accomplices who have taken advantage of the state’s fight against 'galamsey', to allegedly expropriate seized equipment including the 500 excavators, ounces of gold, thousands of weapons and other possessions of illegal miners.

Friends from the media, further evidence has now emerged that Mr. Horace Ekow Ewusi, whom we have long called out as a known 'galamsey' kingpin, did not operate in a vacuum.

In a video recording released on social media this week, the Minister of Environment, Science and Technology, who doubles as the Chairman of the Inter-Ministerial Committee against Illegal Mining, Prof. Kwabena Frimpong-Boateng, is heard facilitating and promoting the “galamsey” business of top NPP officials such as the General Secretary of the NPP, John Boadu, the Ashanti Regional Chairman of the NPP, Bernard Antwi Bosiako (aka “Chairman Wontumi”) ostensibly to generate money for the New Patriotic Party.

This is how low we have sunk as a country as a result of the greed and selfishness of the ruling NPP and corrupt Akufo-Addo government.

Friends from the media, these jaw-dropping revelations which are a testament to how corruption has assumed epidemic proportions around President Akufo-Addo do not come to us as a surprise at all.

We in the NDC have always known that beyond his usual flowery rhetoric, President Akufo-Addo has never been committed to the fight against the illegal mining menace and corruption for that matter.

In fact, these latest developments are a vindication of our long-held position, that President AkufoAddo’s so-called fight against illegal mining is a ruse, calculated to appropriate the “galamsey” trade for NPP and government functionaries.

Let us be clear on this ladies and gentlemen, this 'galamsey' scandal is the result of a grand scheme set up by President Akufo-Addo himself to enrich NPP officials to finance the New Patriotic Party.

This is the reason he populated the Anti-Galamsey committees with top NPP officials like Ekow Ewusi, Charles Bissue among others.

It is now crystal clear, that after spending millions of taxpayers money on the Inter-Ministerial Committee Against Illegal Mining (IMCIM), “Galamstop”, “Operation Vanguard” and other activities, and after killing and maiming several young Ghanaians, certain top officials of the Akufo Addo government have teamed up with officials of the NPP to callously take over the illicit “galamsey” trade, despite its deleterious effects on our environment and human lives.

Not even the hardcore evidence seen in the “Galamsey Fraud” documentary, a painstaking investigation by ace investigative journalist Anas Aremeyaw Anas, in which a Presidential Staffer Charles Bissue was indicted, was enough to move the President into swift action in order to salvage the wobbly fight against “Galamsey”.

Apart from the “galamsey” kingpin, Charles Bissue, several actors within the Akufo-Addo government have in one way or the other compromised the fight against Galamsey, while the President looks on unconcerned.

It would be recalled that sometime in 2018, the Minister for Local Government, Hon. Hajia Alima Mahama stated publicly that some MMDCE’s of this government were actively engaged in galamsey and indicated that she was going to publicly disclose their identities and sanction them.

However, till date, we still don’t know the identities of the said MMDCE’s the minister talked about and what President Akufo-Addo has done about that.

Again, the former Minister for Lands and Natural Resources, Hon. John Peter Amewu, also made a startling observation that members of the Operation Vanguard Team had been compromised by illegal miners.

Also, the Chief Executive Officer of the Forestry Commission, Mr. Kwadwo Owusu Afriyie sometime last year, stated that certain higher-ups in this government were undermining the Galamsey fight and were actually aiding the return of illegal miners to plunder our forests. All these pieces of evidence pointed to the fact that the fight against illegal mining was heading in the wrong direction, yet President Akufo-Addo refused to bring the culprits to book to serve as a deterrent to others. This is why we are where we are today.

Now the questions we must ask ourselves are: What happens to the millions of tax payers’ money that has been wasted on this so-called fight against “galamsey” in the last three (3) years?

What can appease the blood of innocent Ghanaians who have lost their lives through this fraudulent fight against illegal mining, including Major Maxwell Mahama (may his soul rest in peace)?

How about legal small-scale miners whose excavators have been burned and livelihoods destroyed? Certainly, President Akufo-Addo must account to Ghanaians by providing answers to these nagging questions.

Distinguished ladies and gentlemen of the press, any government worth its name would have by now sacked or caused the arrest of the Minister for Environment, Science and Technology, Prof. Kwabena Frimpong-Boateng who has become both a player in and an enabler of the illicit “galamsey” trade.

It would be a complete waste of time to call for the dissolution of the Inter-Ministerial Committee Against Illegal Mining and all anti-galamsey task-force such as “Operation Vanguard” and “Galamstop” because as for this President, he sees no evil and hears no evil when it comes to thievery and corruption. But all those involved in the stealing of the 500 excavators and the stinking rot that has engulfed Akufo-Addo’s fraudulent fight against “galamsey'' must know, that the day of accountability and reckoning is fast approaching.

Signed:

SAMMY GYAMFI

NATIONAL COMMUNICATION OFFICER, NDC

Source: Ghana Crusader

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