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Opinions of Monday, 14 September 2020

Columnist: Kwaku Badu

Is Amidu closing-in on Government Official 1?

As usual, the public discourse on the revoltingly ugly Airbus corruption scandal involving government officials in some selected countries, including Ghana (Mills/Mahama administrations from 2009-2015), has gone quiet.

If you would recall, back then, President Akufo-Addo, realising the seriousness of the Airbus corruption scandal, duly tasked the Special Prosecutor, Mr Martin Amidu to probe the obvious disgraceful act.

But as usual, information is not forthcoming. We have been kept in the dark. More so, it would appear that Ghanaians have forgotten the appalling Airbus scandal.

Dearest reader, why wouldn’t the likes of Ex-president Mahama venture to state that Ghanaians have short memory?

But contrary to former President Mahama’s fallacious assertion, the abhorrent Airbus corruption scandal is still fresh in our memories and we shall sternly urge the Special Prosecutor to pursue the identity of the said elected Government Official one, who has been mentioned in the report.

I am not seeking to exaggerate, far from it. But let us be honest, the Airbus scandal involving the Ghanaian Government Official 1 is an international disgrace of the highest proportion, and therefore the suspect cannot and must not be left off the hook.

We therefore hope and pray that the Special Prosecutor will diligently probe into the shameful Airbus corruption scandal and if possible, truncate the political career of the said Government Official 1 as prescribed by the 1992 Constitution of Ghana. .

Strangely, though, whilst the critics are arguing somewhat vigorously that the said official is a prominent member of the opposition NDC, the supporters of the main suspect are forcefully denying such allegation.

Interestingly, however, the governance experts maintain that only three people can possibly fit into the description of the said government official one, who has been mentioned in the Airbus corruption scandal.

According to the experts, the first suspect should be the first gentleman of the land.

So, based on the experts apt description, the first gentleman during the period 2009 to 2012 should have been the late President Mills.

However, according to the report, the said elected government official one was still in power in 2015, while President Mills had sadly departed from the earth.

Clearly, the late Mills could not have been the government official one, as a matter of fact.

The next possible suspect, according to the experts, is the vice president of the land. Apparently, the former president and the 2020 NDC flagbearer, John Dramani Mahama fits that description.

The governance experts stress further that the other person who can fit into the description of the government official one, mentioned in the Airbus corruption scandal is the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS).

Suffice it to stress that according to the experts, the CDS between 2009 and 2015 was not an elected government official. So he could not have been the said government official one cited in the Airbus corruption scandal.

In synopsising, therefore, it should not take superior powers of the mind or a professorial in rocket science to arrive at the identity of the said government official one, mentioned in the Airbus corruption scandal.

What, however, appears much more bizarre though, is that the offending organisation, the Airbus, has somehow admitted under oath paying huge bribes to the representatives of the countries involved and has consequently been fined a humongous penalty in excess of £3 billion.

Isn’t it, therefore, quite ironic that while the erudite English law luminaries are saying that the Airbus knowingly paid bribes to some selected countries including Ghana with the view to obtaining contracts, the Ghanaian counterparts, many of whom are the indigenes of Akan, Ewe, Dagomba, Dagarti, Frafra, Kusase, Gonja, Mamprusi, Sisala, Mossi, amongst others, are vehemently contending that the said payment should rather be called commission and not bribe? How strange?

Interestingly, the main culprit, who also happens to be the top government official one, cited in the report, is a prominent member of the opposition NDC. So, the political gimmicks and the blatant denials by the vociferous NDC faithful is nothing out of the ordinary, so to speak.

In fact, the NDC loyalists argument that the Airbus payment was a commission and not bribe is out of order, just to say the least.

For, if, indeed, the payment to the Ghanaian representatives was a mere commission, how then would the Airbus agree to pay a staggering penalty in excess of £3 billion?

Let us, therefore, remind the opposition NDC vociferous communicators to stop throwing dust into our eyes because the Airbus indeed paid massive bribes to the selected countries including Ghana in order to gain trading advantage over its competitors.

As it stands, the top government official one has an opportunity to answer the bribery and corruption charges being levelled against him/her by the United Kingdom Serious Fraud Office.

We would, therefore, like to urge the Special Prosecutor, as a matter of urgency, to roundup and if possible end the political career of the alleged top elected government official one who has been cited in the shameful Airbus corruption scandal.

K. Badu, UK.

k.badu2011@gmail.com

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