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Notable corruption scandals that hit the Akufo-Addo government

Tue, 10 Dec 2019 Source: www.ghanaweb.com

Corruption is a phenomenon that occurs in every part of the world. It is often linked to people in higher positions or persons who have great influence within the spaces they find themselves.

The practice seriously undermines democracy and the good name of political institutions. The economic, political, and social effects of corruption are hard to estimate.

Study reveals the cost of corruption in the world is estimated at approximately 1 trillion dollars; meanwhile, about 1 billion people live in conditions of extreme poverty.

December 9, has been observed as the International Anti-Corruption day since the year 2005.

Themed ‘United Against Corruption’, the United Nations noted that the global campaign #UnitedAgainstCorruption focuses on corruption as one of the biggest obstacles to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

From embezzlement, to bribery, to graft activities here are the most shocking corruption scandals to that have shaken the nation’s foundations:

The GRA embezzlement saga

An account officer at the Domestic Tax Division of the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) in Tamale was arrested for stealing GH¢2,430,774.30 belonging to the state.

The culprit, Fuseini Hamza, was slapped with 12 years in prison following investigations and 8-month proceedings in court.

The Tamale High Court, presided over by Mr. Justice Edward Apenkwah, also ordered the confiscation of a house built by the convict in Tamale with some of the stolen money.

Fuseini Hamza was also fined 3,000 penalty units equivalent to GH?36,000 for money laundering or in default serve five years in prison.

NCA $4m case goes to Supreme Court again

Five persons working with the National Communication Authority (NCA) were accused of embezzling $4 million belonging to the Authority.

The accused persons are standing trial for their alleged involvement in the embezzlement of $4 million of state funds during the purchase of listening devices for the National Security, which was sponsored by the NCA.

Nana Owusu Ensaw, a former Board Member of the NCA; Eugene Baffoe-Bonnie, the former Board Chair of the NCA; William Tetteh Tevie, the former Director-General of the NCA; Alhaji Salifu Mimina Osman, a former Deputy National Security Coordinator; and George Derek Oppong, a businessman, were charged in December 2017.

They have pleaded not guilty to all the charges and are currently on bail with the sum of $1 million each.

Number 12

The Ghana Football Association (GFA) was thrown into waves of shock after an expose by investigative journalist, Anas Aremeyaw Anas which implicated the then GFA President, Kwesi Nyantakyi, and other football officials.

The expose led to the uncovering of rot in Ghana Football including instances where Kwesi Nyantakyi was filmed taking $65,000 (£48,000) from an undercover reporter pretending to be a businessman keen to invest in Ghanaian football.

The scandal led to the immediate sack of Nyantakyi as well as the dissolution of the GFA for about a year before the election of the new president, Kurt Okraku.

BOST contaminated fuel

The Bulk, Oil, Storage and Transportation (BOST) was accused of releasing onto the Ghanaian market contaminated fuel. It was speculated that the country was likely to lose about 7 million cedis in revenue following attempts by the BOST to sell contaminated fuel to some oil marketing companies.

Details emerging from the sale of contaminated fuel by BOST have revealed that the firm at the center of the saga – Movenpiina oil – sold two million litres of the contaminated oil to another unlicensed firm called Macwest

This attracted the outrage of many Ghanaians including the Minority in Parliament who called for the resignation of the then MD of the Alfred Obeng Boateng who was accused of corruptible behaviour. Since then, BOST has had a change in management twice, in a period of three years.

AMERI Deal

The controversial Ameri deal involved a power agreement between government and UAE-based AMERI Energy cost $510 million.

However, the Akufo-Addo government had been short-changed by AMERI as they presented an overpriced budget, and were overpaid by $150 million.

This led to an infamous renegotiation of the deal by then Energy Minister, Boakye Agyarko, which subsequently sparked intense debate across the country.

Mr Agyarko came under heavy criticism when he claimed that Ghana will gain $405 million from the new power deal with Ameri Energy but it was discovered that the country will rather lose up to $472 million.

The goof led to his sack after surmounting pressure and was replaced by the current Energy Minister, Peter Amewu.

The statement from the Presidency read, “We all know the circumstances. We all know the story that has panned out as a result of the deal and the President believes that in the interest of the Ghanaian people, in the interest of the country and in the interest of his own administration, the Minister for Energy, Hon. Boakye Agyarko should be relieved of his position,” Eugene Arhin told Citi News.

Analysis from observers indicates that the proposed amendment to the AMERI agreement will see a cash flow of $1,125,007,380.

But it is expected that the government would be paying a total of $1.375 billion for the AMERI power plant over approximately 15 years instead of the original $510 million.

Source: www.ghanaweb.com

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