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General News of Wednesday, 28 September 2022

Source: www.ghanaweb.com

Sam Jonah was knighted because he sold Ghana’s gold interests to the English - Bernard Mornah alleges

Bernard Mornah (left),  Sir Sam Jonah (right) Bernard Mornah (left), Sir Sam Jonah (right)

Former Chairperson of the Peoples National Convention (PNC), Bernard Mornah, has alleged the former Chief Executive Officer of Ashanti Goldfields, Sir Sam Jonah, was only knighted by the British monarchy for the role he played in the sale of parts of a mining company which was then wholly owned by the state.

Speaking in a TV3 interview monitored by GhanaWeb, Mornah said that although Sir Jonah has rejected the assertion that he was knighted for the sale of Ashanti Goldfields, he (Jonah) has never given a tangible reason for his knighthood.

“Sir Jonah admits that Ghana does not control anything (mining of gold). But can Sir Jonah say that he is not responsible for the sale and auction of our Ashanti Goldfields? Was he not the Chief Executive of AGF and was it not under his leadership that AGF shares were auctioned to AngloGold Ashanti by which time he became co-president only for a year and then they jettison him?

“… When people say that he was knighted because he sold our right in the Ashanti Goldfields, he comes to say that is not the reason for which he was knighted. Then when they ask him what were the reasons for which he was knighted, he will say that the British will not tell him why he was knighted.

“You see the contradiction. You don’t even know why you were knighted. We are telling you that it is a result of the fact that you sold Ghana’s interest to the English. The Queen has control of your gold and so they decided to come and knight you,” he said.

He added that the sale of all the gold concessions in Ghana led to private agencies sacking a lot of miners which forced these people to go into illegal mining.

Meanwhile, Sir Sam Jonah KBE has revealed the circumstances under which the British knighthood was conferred on him by Prince Charles (now King Charles III) instead of his late mother Queen Elizabeth II.

In an interview on the BBUM show, a personality profile programme on Ghana Television (September 25), the former Ashanti Goldfields CEO said it was a privilege to have been invited and honoured by the British Royal Family.

Jonah was knighted by Prince Charles in 2003, a ceremony that is ordinarily undertaken by the Queen herself. He explained how an equally important engagement took the Queen away hence the duty was placed on her son.

“I had the privilege to be knighted by Prince Charles in 2003, it was quite an experience, I was fortunate I took my entire family with me, which was very unusual. Because usually, they would ask you to come with your spouse.

“I was fortunate because what happened was, that same day, the reason why I was not knighted by the Queen was that, the Queen was hosting President Putin to a state lunch and therefore it fell on Prince Charles.

“Therefore, Prince Charles said, bring your entire family and so I took my entire family,” he added.

You can also watch this episode of People & Places here:



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