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General News of Monday, 27 January 2014

Source: myjoyonline.com

Somebody bigger than Pele needs to be indicted - Akomea

Former Communications Director of the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP) Nana Akomea has suggested the rot at GYEEDA is far bigger than Abuga Pele, the man who has been formally charged with causing financial loss to the state.

He questions “how can Abuga Pele cause the payment of $2million to an individual because GYEEDA hasn't got that money. How? How can GYEEDA cause the granting of loan to a private company amounting to GHC 50,000".

The National Democratic Congress (NDC) Member of Parliament for Chiana-Paga has been charged with willfully causing financial loss to the state, misapplication of public funds and aiding and abetting crime.

Mr. Abuga Pele on behalf of GYEEDA without authorization from his minister signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the CEO of GIG Mr. Assibit and paid GH¢3,330,568.53 to the company, the court heard Friday.

The commencement of prosecution comes almost nine months after Joy FM's investigative journalist Manasseh Azure serialized a litany of wrongdoing going on at the government agency.

According to Manasseh Azure Awuni, the report cites “extreme focus of power and authority at the top echelons of governance”, which has resulted in a situation whereby the deputy National Coordinators of GYEEDA, the Monitoring and Evaluation team, and Regional Coordinators are unaware of modules that have been approved and for which implementation had started.

Speaking on Joy FM and Multi TV's Saturday news analysis programme Newsfile, Nana Akomea says the rot at GYEEDA "is much, much, much bigger than Abuga Pele. It goes way way beyond the coordinator".

Akomea argues that if Abuga Pele is being prosecuted for signing the MoU without ministerial approval than whoever authorized the payment of the money resulting in the financial loss should be made to answer.

"We are being told that he didn't have ministerial approval so who paid the money?.. because he has to write a contract for it to be processed through the system for it to be paid by the Ministry of Finance... "If there was no ministerial approval how did it go through the system for it to be paid?" Nana Akomea fumed.

Backing the former NPP Communications Director, Egbert Faibille Jnr is shocked that a MoU alone could cause the Finance ministry to release the monies.

"In the 21st century Ghana a MoU resulted in the payment of monies? My understanding of MoU is that it is an expression of intent and beyond that a contract is executed and so which cabinet sat that GH¢826,000 left the national kitty?", the lawyer argued.

He said even the release of monies for the payment of feeding allowances for secondary schools in the Northern Region went through cabinet.

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