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General News Thu, 1 Aug 2019

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‘Negligent’ firms in PDS guarantee ‘fraud’ face sanction – Gov’t

Ghana has served notice agencies that executed ‘fraudulent documents’ for the Power Distribution Services (PDS) used as a guarantee for the ECG concession will be made to answer for their actions or inactions if the claim of fraud is established.

The ‘Demand Guarantee’ was a key prerequisite under the concession to secure the assets of ECG that were leased to PDS on March 1 this year for a 20-year period.

But the Qatar-based insurer and reinsurer, AL Koot, in whose name the guarantee was issued, has declared the document null and void on the basis that the officer who executed it was not authorized to do so.

The development subsequently forced government to suspend its concession agreement with PDS on July 30.

Some critics have questioned whether due diligence was not conducted before the government signed the agreement, but the Energy Minister John Peter Amewu has shot down that argument and asked that government is credited for the discovery of the alleged fraud.

He exclusively told TV3’s Paa Kwesi Asare Wednesday the agencies, including some two Ghanaian firms, that interfaced for PDS in the procurement of the guarantee will have some questions to answer in the emerging issue.

The Minister mentioned Cal Bank, Donewell Insurance Company Limited and an Australian firm as the companies which may be called to answer questions if it is established that the guarantee documents were obtained through fraud.

“…If it is found out that there have been some negligence in terms of efforts that have produced this fraudulent document, then, of course, these agencies will have to be called to answer questions,” he stated.

Mr Amewu said PDS per the records, has Cal Bank and Donewell Insurance Company and a third interface, an Australian firm as those to “execute the final understanding between Cal merchant and Donewell and then AL Koot Company”.



The alleged fraud, he said will be investigated by the security agencies.

“…because the word fraud has been mentioned, that again goes to the security agencies to take that,” he said but could not give timelines as to when the said investigations will be concluded.

He stated: I will not be in a position to know how long it is going to take the security agencies to take that.

Meanwhile, the Minister said a government and MiDA delegation are to go to Qatar to have discussions with AL Koot with the view to verifying the claims of the company as regards the issue of fraud.

Source: 3 News

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