Special Prosecutor should be interested in GETFund saga – lawyer

Sun, 1 Mar 2020 Source: 3 News

Private legal practitioner, Bobby Benson is challenging the Special Prosecutor to take up the alleged mismanaged of funds at the Ghana Education Trust Fund (GETFund) without waiting for his office to be petitioned.

A report by the Auditor-General cited the GETFund for disbursing funds to unqualified persons between 2012 and 2018 and overrunning its budget for scholarship each year to as high as 378%.

On TV3’s flagship programme, The Key Points with sit-in host Johnnie Hughes on Saturday, Mr. Benson noted that the money involved here is way bigger than some of the cases the Special Prosecutor has been prosecuting.

From 2012 to 2018, GETFund overran its budget for scholarship in excess of 255 million cedis.

“This matter should be something the Special Prosecutor should definitely be interested in, considering his public zeal about issues like this,” the legal practitioner stressed.

Mr. Benson intimidated that the issue at stake makes “complete mockery” of the Fiscal Responsibility Act.

According to him, it is curious that some GETFund projects in schools are left uncompleted for years as well as it contractors are not paid because it claimed it doesn’t have money.

“And this is where the money is going? Paying for postgraduate of Members of Parliament. Look at somebody whose father employs thousands of people and yet she cannot afford 22,000 or so and politicians are justifying it. We are not angry enough…when would the ordinarily citizens rise up.”

Bernard Conduah who works with the Audit Service revealed that though the Education Minister has some discretionary powers as to how he wants a portion of the funds administered, it should be stated on its budget request to Parliament. However, he revealed, that in all the cases, as audited, GETFund failed to state areas the minister wants funds disbursed to under the discretionary powers.

“Terrible and worrying,” he said of how funds at GETFund were disbursed. The Education Ministry has a supervisory role over the fund but the “question is, were they supervising, were they aware of these overruns?” he asked.

Source: 3 News

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