General News of Monday, 14 January 2013
-Faces Judgment Debt Commission over ¢950 Million
By A A Yayra
Ace broadcaster and host of Peace Fm’s morning show “Kokrookoo,” Kwame Sefa Kaye is in the news again; this time round, for the wrong reasons as the Akwapem North District Assembly (ANDA) is set to drag him before a five member Judgment Debt Commission to answer questions relating to his involvement in the assembly incurring a whopping liability of nine hundred and fifty million Cedis (¢ 950, 000, 000.00).
The amount, per documents intercepted by The Al-Hajj forms part of Mr Sefa Kaye’s involvement in what could be described as a dramatic or deliberate miscarriage of contractual engagements on behalf of the 1986 year group of Okuapeman Senior High School (OKUASS) to construct a 50 bed girls’ dormitory for the school.
In a report, currently in possession of The Al-Hajj, the authorities of the ANDA at a sitting on Monday, December 31, 2012 approved a motion by the Executive Committee of the assembly to set up a special committee to look into the payment of a judgment debt of GHS¢ 950.000 by the assembly to constructions company known as M/S Megabon, which was awarded by the commercial division of the Koforidua High Court.
The Committee among other things has been tasked to engage the culpability of anybody whose actions or inactions led to the assembly incurring the liability and make recommendations on actions that should be taken against those whose contributions led to the payment. A source close to the Committee disclosed to The Al-Hajj that Kwame Sefa Kaye who led the old students of the OKUASS to re-award a contract to another contractor when the existing contract with M/S Megabon had not been abrogated will be invited to give an account on why he took such a decision. Others to be invited includes, the current District Chief Executive, Opare Addo, the former DCE under ex-president Kufuor’s administration, E Adu Aboagye, the former District Coordinator (2005-2007) Edward Gbenya, the former District Finance Officer (2005-2008) Constance Taskpoe and the District Budget Officer (2005-2013) Osafo Appiah.
The rest are the former District Planning Officer (2005-2007) Morrison Agbemafle, the former District Engineer (2005-2009) Ernest Quaye and officials of Tri-Matrix Consult, consultants to the project.
The five member committee, which is being chaired by the chairman of the Justice and Security Sub-committee of the ANDA, Alhaji Sumaila will officially commence investigations into the matter tomorrow January 15, 2013.
Other members of the committee are the Chairman of the Finance and Administration sub-committee of the assembly, R G Ansah-Appiah; Amakye Odoi, chairman of social service sub-committee; Ebenezer Appiah Opare an Accra bases legal practitioner and Dora M Kpodo, Deputy Director of the ANDA. It would be recalled that the Monday, November 19, 2012 edition of The Al-Hajj carried a story detailing blow-by-blow how the ANDA incurred that huge liability staring in the face of the Ghanaian tax payers.
The commercial court division of the Koforidua High court last year awarded a colossal sum of GH?95.000.00 or ?950 million to Plaintiff applicant (M/S Megabon) plus interest at a contractual rate of 28.1% from July 2012 for breach of contract on the part of the old student of OKUASS and the Akwapem North District Assembly.
The court action was necessitated by the failure of the former District Chief Executive of the ANDA, Hon E Adu Aboagye and the former Eastern Regional Minister, Hon Asiedu Afram in 2007 to respond to the numerous petitions by the contractor.
As part of the ruling, the court has ordered the impounding of two vehicles belonging to ANDA-Toyota pick-up and a Toyota mini bus. Meanwhile, work on the proposed project has been halted due to the legal tussle between the various parties.
In a report by the Finance and Administration sub-committee of ANDA, dated August 10, 2012 on the project, it has been revealed that in June 2006, ace Journalist and host of Kokrokoo on Peace Fm, Kwame Sefa Kaye led the 1986 years group of OKUASS to source for funds from the HIPC accounts for the construction of a 50 bed girls’ dormitory for the school.
The funds were however routed through the ANDA. ANDA in conjunction with the OKUASS old students awarded the contract to M/S Megabon Ltd at a contract sum of ¢1, 268,450.00 or One Hundred and Twenty-Six Thounsand Eight Hundred and Forty-Five Ghana Cedis.
The assembly then paid a mobilization amount of ¢380, 536. 400.00 to the contractor on voucher No. 4/19 of 4/9/2006 with cheque number 330668 to commence business in 2006.
According to the documents, Tri-Matix Consult, the consultants working on the project issued an interim payment certificate No.2 for payment of ¢ 262, 540, 400.00 less 10% retention or ¢26, 254.000.00.
The actual amount to be paid was ¢ 236, 286, 400.00 yet the total amount of ¢262 540, 400.00 were paid on voucher No. 5/12 of 22/12/2006. No deduction in respect of the mobilization fee or that of the 10% retention was made.
Interesting as it may seem a subsequent payment was made on interim certificate No.3 on voucher number 12/2 dated 28/2/ 2007 for an amount of ¢101, 424, 500 on cheque No. 330615 to the contractor.
The document, however, confirmed that an interim certificate No.4 amounting to ¢ 134, 874, 000.00 issued in July 2007 by the consultants to the contractor were not honoured by ANDA.
Dramatically as it maybe, while the contractor was waiting for the assembly to advance more funds to enable him continue with the project, Mr. Sefa Kaye and the 1986 year group of OKUASS, it is alleged, re-awarded the contract to a new and different contractor without consulting the assembly.
After failing to respond to his numerous petitions addressed to the then former District Chief Executive of the ANDA, Hon E Adu Aboagye and the former Eastern Regional Minister, Hon Asiedu Afram the original contractors, M/S Megabon Ltd, through its solicitors in 2007 filed a suit against the ANDA and the new contractor at the commercial court division of the Koforidua High court. When reporters of The Al-Hajj visited the said project site, there was no contractor on site, the students of OKUASS have turned the site to an alternate place of convenience, and whiles woods and other equipment meant for the project have been left to the mercy of the weather.