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General News of Monday, 7 January 2019

Source: mynewsgh.com

13 Ghanaians petition Amidu on $176m Awuah-Darko, Twum Boafo, others ‘chop chop’

Some thirteen (13) Ghanaians have petitioned the office of the Special Prosecutor Martin Amidu to investigate a report of alleged thievery of state resources by former appointees of then-President John Mahama, MyNewsGh.com has filed.

The Mahama officials named include Mr Kwadwo Twum-Boafo of the Freezones Board, Mr George Ben-Crenstsil of the Ghana Standards Authority, Mr Kingsley Kwame Awuah-Darko of BOST, Sedina A. Tamakloe of MASLOC, Kakra Essamuah of BOST among others.

According to the 13 petitioners, about $176million were embezzled by these officials combined and they are appalled by the seeming silence and lack of action by Mr Amidu on some of the cases submitted to him so far, as nothing has been heard from his outfit.

The list of thirteen which includes lawyers aligned to the ruling NPP include: Sefah Ato Welbeck, Frank Afrifa (Esq), Kyei Baffour (Esq), Francis Odei Ansah, Michael Otu Addo, Philip Kumi, Rita Pokuaa, Felix Tenkorang, Michael Tepre, Elliot Awuku, Theophilus A. Larbi, Robert Osei Bonsu and Stephen Obikyenbi Junior.

See full petition:

Probe Forensic Audit Report (2018), and Auditor General’s Report (2010-2016)

Your Lordship
Martin Amidu (Esq)
Office of the Special Prosecutor
Cantonments, Accra

Dear Sir,
REQUEST FOR PROBE INTO THE FORENSIC AUDIT REPORTS OF STATE INSTITUTIONS (2018) AND AUDITOR GENERAL’S REPORT (2010-2016)

Before your assumption as the Special Prosecutor in April, Ghanaians would always go to bed on empty stomachs that yearn for justice. But, upon your assumption of office–although we are still hungry–there is the hope that we will soon enjoy justice at the end of the tunnel. As Ghanaian Citizens, we have every right as enshrined in the 1992 constitution to demand probity and accountability from state officials. And this can only be possible when it is done through outfits with prosecutorial/adjudicatory powers like the Office of-of the Special Prosecutor.

In summary, the Act (Special Prosecutor Act, 2017 (Act 959)) which establishes your office mandates you to investigate and prosecute alleged corruption offences, recover the proceeds of corruption and take steps to prevent corruption. However, close to ten (10) months since the coming into force of the OSP we have little or nothing to boast about as Ghanaians. There have been little steps and initiatives so far taken to forestall doom on enemies of the state. Today;

Many Ghanaians seem disappointed and devastated for the fact that, they had waited on justice from the OSP for quite too long yet they have seen nothing.

We will, however, commend you for the works done so far. Many may not appreciate those steps but forgive us on their behalf. What everyone seeks, even school children is justice. Suffice to say, let the imprisonment flow.

We are cognizant of the fact that your office has received a number of petitions (35) of which 27 have been acknowledged and okayed to have worked on soon. But, our greatest fear, for now, is not about what the OSP has done but what the OSP isn’t doing. That is, we need to see or hear something from the OSP.

We are again cognizant of the fact that, the legislative Instrument (Li) needed to enable you to operate fully is still pending before Parliament. This we are aware that it will be fully operational this year, 2019. Rumours are that, maybe, the august house, Parliament, itself, lacks the moral impetus and clean hands to facilitate its swift passage.
We are again aware of the minor scuffle your office had with the office of government machinery for their inability to furnish you with logistics and essentials that will enable you work effectively. That at a point you decided to honourably resign should it continue. Today, we are glad that under the 2019 budget estimate, Appendix 4A, Serial number 49:

Ministries/Department & Agencies’ Expenditure Allocation, 2019, an amount of Ghc180,160,231million allocation has been made for the Office of the Special Prosecutor (OSP) to work proactively.

Sir Vigilante, these are good steps. But, dan les eyes of the masses, it is not so much about LI, threats or funding. It is about the measures put in place to give us some level of hope. Many are beginning to thought your capabilities whilst others are also beginning to ponder over the possibility of your inability to work effectively especially effecting subpoenas to some members of the erstwhile government. Simply because you are of their roots.

Nonetheless, the President appointed you because he knows you very well.
It’s as if the OSP is sleeping on the job which is not so. As for us, if there is anything at all to blame then it should be your public relations department. We pray you to have a PR setup that will from time to time brief Ghanaians what the OSP is doing. Hitherto, this is the only petition which has detailed out some of the steps you have taken so far, and the main reason why the OSP seem dormant.

Sir, the subject of this petition has to do with corruption and prosecution. Many at times we are stifled and grappled with matters of State concerns especially when public cases are left to go into the drains. Corruption we all know is an age-long canker successive governments especially this current government had vowed to uproot. However, Ghanaians saw corruption being decorated with a fine new title in fine linen with impunity under the popular ‘create, loot and share’ practices of a particular ruling party.

In the last nine (9) years Ghana was mesmerised by the looks of the most scandalous machinations of all time. Amongst them were the: Gyeeda–Savannah Accelerated Development Authority (SADA), Isofoton, Stx housing deal, Bus branding, Cocaine into soda scandal, Woyome Scandal inter alia.

(a). The bone of contention under these scandals is not only pretentious and preposterous but an organised crime that smacks Ghanaians in the face. Why would State officials who are found culpable of syphoning state funds be left to go scot free simply because they have shown signs of remorsefulness? Is the cassava thief left a free man after begging the sitting judge? Never, never at all. So why State robber?

(b). Your Lordship, it is crucial to note that, legal matters need many investigations to gather evidence before charge. No two ways. However, we are also quick to remind you that, justice delayed is justice denied. Ghanaians are losing their temper. We are all losing our temper.

(c). Because we know that you won’t act based on hearsay, we have decided to draw your attention to some vital official documents: the Auditor General’s Report (2010-2016). We know you have had petitions on the AG’s report. This petition would like to reignite your consciousness to how destructive their actions were. In all of these reports, you will find sheer negligence, embezzlement, diversion of funds, payments for no work done, diversion of state funds into private/individual accounts, abuse of financial rights and thievery on the part of public officials. We cannot afford to throw our hands in despair as though we are helpless when it is always we the taxpayers that suffer.

(d). The Economic and Organised Crime Office (EOCO) in 2017 per section 3 (a) of the EOCO Act, 2010 (Act 804), Section 14 (3) of Act 804 engaged experts to look into the activities of some selected state institutions.

Sir, we are by this petition calling for the prosecution of all persons found to have mismanaged and embezzled State funds as captured in the report. Unlisted are some of the persons implicated in the 2018 forensic audit report to have traumatised Ghanaians. And we will, however, react to any form of leniency against prosecution when the time begins.

GH. TELECOM UNIVERSITY COLLEGE
?Prof. Osei. Darkwa
?Dr. Baffour Awuah
Ghc43,434,162.30million
GHANA NATIONAL GAS COMPANY LTD
?Mr. George Sipa Yankey
Ghc39,488,825.35million
BOST CO. LTD
?Mr. Kingsley K. Awuah Darko
?Mr. George Aborah
?Mr. Ato Wilson
?Mr. Kakra Essamuah Ghc285,561,245.80m
MASLOC
?Ms. Sedina A. Tamakloe
Ghc3,193,592million
FREE ZONES BOARD
?Mr. Kwadwo Twum. Boafo
Cash:- Ghc11,546,880
GHANA STANDARD AUTHORITY
?Mr. George Ben-Crenstil
Ghc18,821,660.90million
Total: Ghc402,046,366.35m. The report takes into consideration the cedis/dollar equivalent and pegs the total mismanaged funds at: $USD176million

(e). If for nothing at all, we are aware that, the Special Prosecutor Act gives you the power to release lists of perceived corruption culprits inter alia. Likewise an official ban on travel for all such persons implicated in the A Reports and Forensic Audit Report.

At least such releases alone give Ghanaians some level of relief. And will be a stitch in time that will send some chills down the spines of corruptible officials barring them from stepping out of the Country before they are cleared of all wrongdoings.

As we write, there is a battle of words between ongoing. One faction calls the other, corrupt. The other faction asserts that, if indeed they have syphoned money then the former should prosecute them. Because they (former) have a Special Prosecutor. What the latter fails to realize is that the SP is not political but a character for all Ghanaians.

Ghanaians are slowly getting devastated as to why the long wait for justice. We humbly implore you to do your best whilst we also do our best. Lest you will be the worst Prosecutor we ever had in history. Thank you and happy new year.

Please do acknowledge receipt. Thank you

——SIGNED—–

Sefah Ato Welbeck
Frank Afrifa (Esq)
Kyei Baffour (Esq)
Francis Odei Ansah
Michael Otu Addo
Philip Kumi
Rita Pokuaa
Felix Tenkorang
Michael Tepre
Elliot Awuku
Theophilus A. Larbi
Robert Osei Bonsu
Stephen Obikyenbi Junior