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General News of Sunday, 28 March 2021

Source: www.ghanaweb.com

How Peter Mac Manu allegedly interfered with committee investigating MPS contract at GPHA

Peter Mac Manu, President Akufo-Addo’s preferred Campaign Chairman is constantly interfering with the work of the committee appointed by Vice President Bawumia to investigate the claim that GH¢60million (about $10m) was spent by the Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority (NDC) on “presidential protocol” to help fund the NDC’s election campaign in 2016, Africa Confidential, a news magazine, has said.

The Africa Confidential report sighted by GhanaWeb, narrates that the Akufo-Addo administration appointed one Paul Asare Ansah, as the Director-General of GPHA, to rectify the wrongs of the MPS contract and restore GPHA’s equity.

The report stated further, “Ansah looked like the man for the job. He lost no time trying to regain GPHA’s 30 [per cent of the MPS deal], claiming irregularities in the dilution of its equity. Ansah said that Chris Amador, the GPHA official present at the meetings where Ghana’s 30 [per cent] in MPS was diluted to 15 per cent] had no mandate to agree to it. His GPHA colleague Esther Gyebi-Donkor backed Ansah, and she also pointed out MPS’s unilateral extension of its operating contract by five years. MPS dug in, however, insisting all the changes were legal. If GPHA wanted its 30 [per cent] back it would have a fight on its hands.”

The report continued: “Ethically and morally, it was clear to GPHA and the new government that Ghana had been betrayed, and the 30 [per cent] portion of the equity in MPS always destined to belong to the nation had been halved by sharp – if not unlawful – practice. But while the committee was conducting what independent observers have described as an exemplary investigation, the mood in government was subtly changing. MPS’s influence with the new government was steadily growing.”

Peter Mac Manu who was appointed in August 2017 as chairperson of the GPHA was also appointed to the board of MPS, and co-opted onto the ministerial investigating committee.

“Mac Manu constantly interfered in the committee’s deliberations [offering] defences for MPS and [holding] the line against any notion of renegotiating the contract terms, a source on the committee told [Africa Confidential], which reported that Mac Manu firmly denied ‘any such allegation of interference”.

Peter Mac Manu, the Africa Confidential report explained, denied that chairing the GPHA while sitting on the board of MPS, in which he said he has no pecuniary interest, was a conflict of interest.

“The two bodies have a common interest in profitability,” the Africa Confidential said as sighted by GhanaWeb. “The success of MPS therefore is the success of each shareholder including GPHA money from the other shareholders. The loan will be repaid out of future revenues and royalties from port operations.”

Read below the full report.

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