The Special Prosecutor, Martin Amidu has raised flags over the controversial Agyapa Royalties Deal but President Akufo-Addo has instructed that the Finance Minister returns the deal for reconsideration.
Mr Amidu had, in his corruption risk assessment of the controversial deal, argued among other things that consultations over the agreement were not comprehensive enough, adding that it lacked “fundamentals of probity, transparency and accountability.”
Amidu thus criticised the officials who took part in the processes leading to the approval of the agreement which he said flouted several laws with impunity prior to the approval of the controversial deal.
A part of the Special Prosecutor’s report read…“All the parties to the Mandate Agreement are deemed to have known the law but ignored it with impunity in signing and implementing the Mandate Agreement which is null and void ab initio as violating the Public Financial Management Act, 2016 (Act 921) and the Public Procurement Authority Procurement Act, 2003 (Act 663) as amended.”
Mr Amidu went on, “This conduct which appears to have been in furtherance of the suspected bid-rigging, in the assessment of this Office severely lowered the risk of corruption, and rendered them a low risk enterprise in the Agyapa Royalties Transactions process and their approval. It is with these new lenses that the analysis of the risk of corruption, and anti-corruption assessments of the legality of the engagement of the other services providers and underwriters on the recommendations of the Transaction Advisors acting as the Ministry of Finance’s procurement entity tender committee contrary to Part VI of the Public Procurement Act, 2003 (Act 663) as amended, and Sections 7 and 25 of the Public Financial Management Act, 2016 (Act 921) afore-quoted were made.”
“It was further analyzed and assessed that the Transaction Advisor(s) nonetheless, went ahead to identify and recommend services providers and underwriters to the Ministry of Finance for appointment by the Republic of Ghana. The Ministry acted contrary to the Public Procurement Authority Act and the Public Financial Management Act in delegating the power to appoint services providers and/or other underwriters to the unlawfully appointed Transaction Advisor(s). The Transaction Advisor(s) whose selection and appointment by the Ministry of Finance did not measure up favourably to the analysis of the risk of corruption and anti-corruption assessment that meets the fundamentals of probity, transparency and accountability was/were potentially susceptible to undue influence, favouritism, cronyism, nepotism, and all forms of discrimination abhorred under the 1992 Constitution leading to the suspected packing of the services provider and underwriters position with entities not chosen on merit.”
Despite the grave concerns by many civil society organisations about the deal that was suspended last month, President Akufo-Addo wants it back on the deliberation table to be reconsidered before Parliament rises.
Some of the areas prioritised for scrutiny by President Akufo-Addo during the deal include allocations, relationships and investments involved.