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General News of Friday, 23 July 2021

Source: www.ghanaweb.com

Sputnik V vaccine: Who is the ‘godfather’ you are trying to protect? – Pratt quizzes Health Minister

Veteran journalist Kwesi Pratt Jnr Veteran journalist Kwesi Pratt Jnr

• Pratt believes that the government is protecting someone in the Sputnik saga

• He is demanding answers to some questions about the deal

• Health Minister, Kwaku Agyeman-Manu has admitted to by-passing Parliament in signing the deal

Veteran journalist Kwesi Pratt Jnr suspects that government officials are shielding an influential figure who is behind the controversial now abrogated Sputnik V contract.

According to the Pratt, the multiple falsehoods being peddled by government officials suggests there is a ‘godfather’ behind the scenes who is being protected.

Speaking on Good Morning Ghana show on Metro TV, Pratt said that he has reasons to believe that the Health and Information Ministers are taking the fall for someone who in a higher capacity.

"Some of the things which the Minister is being held responsible for now were actually put out by the Ministry of Information, which is the official mouthpiece of the government. They knew they were lying. Who were they trying to save? There must be some godfather somewhere that everyone wants to save.

‘That godfather we do not know. That powerful person who initiated this, we do not know him. We can only speculate. Everybody is falling down before this person. Everybody is doing everything to protect this person," he explained.

Kwesi Pratt’s comment is on the back of some statements made by Health Minister Kwaku Agyeman Manu before the bi-partisan committee probing the initial purchase of the Russian-made jabs.

Agyeman Manu admitted before the committee that due process was not followed in striking the deal with the Sheikh Al-Makhtoum for the supply of Sputnik V vaccines.

“I was in a desperate and helpless situation with the management of the Covid numbers. In February, we had 78 deaths; by March, we had 56 deaths, and these were the numbers that pushed me to act,” he said.

“I had plans to come to seek approval from the House after I have signed the contract. But [due to] my frustrations to try to get vaccines for us at the heat of the second wave, I relied on the Executive Instrument 61 passed by Parliament and hid behind emergency clauses that have been invoked to do that.

“And I came to Parliament and informed the House that this is what I had done and, therefore, I need regularisation and approval...” he said.

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