General News of Monday, 6 November 2017

Source: Graphic.com.gh

Ibrahim Mahama named in Paradise Papers

Mr Ibrahim Mahama, the Chief Executive Officer of Engineers & Planners Company Limited, has been named in the latest investigative piece, dubbed the Paradise papers and authored by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) on offshore business.

The Paradise Papers, released on Sunday November 5, 2017 by the group of international investigative journalists reveals the offshore links of some of the globe’s most prominent figures.

It reveals offshore interests and activities of more than 120 politicians and world leaders, including Queen Elizabeth II, and 13 advisers, major donors and members of U.S. President Donald J. Trump

It also exposes the tax engineering of more than 100 multinational corporations, including Apple, Nike and Botox-maker Allergan.

In the case of Mr Ibrahim Mahama, he is described in the report as being ranked by Appleby with his companies as a high risk due to his relationship to the then-president and allegations in local media that government funds were being used to repay the company’s multimillion-dollar bank loan.

The company has however denied any wrongdoing.

Mr Mahama is a brother of the former President John Mahama who was recently investigated by the Economic and Organized Crimes Office (EOCO) for allegedly issuing bad cheques.

In 2016, his company was taken to court for allegedly not paying social security payments to staff; the case was later settled.

The data provided on him in the report states that in 2013, representatives of Mr Ibrahim Mahama and his contracting company Engineers and Planners Company Limited contacted Appleby about creating two offshore companies in the Isle of Man but ended up creating only one. That company, Red Sky Aviation Limited, was used to hold a $7 million Bombardier Challenger jet.

The second company was intended for “consulting services in the oil and gas mining infrastructure development and real estate sectors of the Ghanaian economy.”

Appleby ranked Mr Mahama and his companies as a high risk due to his relationship to the then-president and allegations in local media that government funds were being used to repay the company’s multimillion-dollar bank loan. Mahama’s company denied any wrongdoing.

Response

A representative of Engineers & Planners Company Limited declined to respond to specific questions and told ICIJ that there was nothing illegal in the use of offshore companies.