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Sputnik V deal: The law must deal with Agyeman-Manu – Adjei Mensah

The Member of Parliament (MP) for Wassa East, Mr Isaac Adjei Mensah has said the Minister for Health, Mr Kwaku Agyeman-Manu must only not resign for the botched Sputnik V deal but be brought to face the law.

The Minority is calling for the head of the Agyeman-Manu for undertaking an international transaction to get the country COVID-19 vaccines without prior approval from Parliament.

The minister was blamed for flouting procurement regulations while signing the deal.

Speaking to Kwame Minkah on Dwaboase on TV XYZ Thursday, Adjei Mensah, a former deputy Minister for Roads and Highways, indicated that the Minister acted recklessly at a time the country’s resources needed to be used judiciously.

Kwaku Agyemang Manu is Ghana’s Health Minister

A Parliamentary Committee that probed the Sputnik V vaccine contract after the minister was exposed found that the amount of $2,850,000 (representing 50% of the contract sum of $5,700,000) had been paid to Messrs Al Maktoum despite the Minister claiming no payment had been made as far as he was concerned.

The amount that translates into the cedi equivalent of GH¢16,331,640 converted at the then prevailing exchange rate of $1 to ¢5.73 was for 300,000 vaccines.

“The Health Minister acted contrary to the laws of the country and must be punished for that. He should not just resign,” Adjei Mensah noted.

Minority’s Stance

Adjei Mensah’s comment comes after the Minority Chief Whip, Muntaka Mubarak sent a Memo to the Speaker of Parliament on Wednesday, stressing that the Dormaa Central MP’s action is contrary to Article 191 of the 1992 Constitution.

According to the Minority signing a procurement agreement with the “prior approval of the Board of the Public Procurement Authority (PPA) under sections 40 and 41 of the PPA Act, 2003 (663) as amended by Act 914 which constitutes a criminal offense under the law.”

The Minority said, considering that “the above conduct, being in direct breach of the Constitution and Laws of passed by this honourable House, the Health Minister be removed from office as a Minister by a vote of censure passed in accordance with Article 82 of the Constitution.”

Meanwhile, Agyeman Manu has explained that the country needed vaccines urgently although the commodity was scarce on the global market.

In an interview on Adom FM, he further noted that the decision was tough but considering the number of lives being lost, he had to make a decision after consultation with his technical team.

“When the issue of Sputnik-V came up, in fact, there was a decision to go in for more vaccines because there was a scarcity of vaccines as many countries had closed their borders.

“What encouraged us to buy those vaccines was that the same vaccine was sold at $38 elsewhere, so considering that, we thought it was cheap,” he explained on Adom FM’s Burning Issues.

 

Source: Myxyzonline.com|Ghana

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