Re: ‘Mahama presidency bagged over ¢22m BOST cash’ – Majority lists former CEO’s ‘sins’

Read Ohenenana Obonti Krow’s response  

At their press conference last Friday, the majority side of Ghana’s Parliament accused Mr Awuah Darko of transferring between Ghc 2.5 and Ghc3.5 twice every month between October 2015 to June 2016 to the seat of government. Flanked by the majority leader Osei-Kyei Mensah-Bonsu and other leaders on the majority side, the MP for Odotobri, Emmanuel Akwasi Gyamfi, made this allegations without supporting it with any concrete evidence. On Citi FM, Umaru Sanda gave the MP the opportunity to substantiate his allegations but the MP couldn’t provide any.

How much profit was BOST making monthly to transfer that colossal amount to the seat of government twice every month. It is hard to give a precise estimate of the effect of Parliament on the other sectors of government though its role is best understood by regarding it not primarily as a check on the executive but as one of the institutions through which our government operate. We have a committee in Parliament charged with the responsibility of monitoring government business and to investigate all government businesses and transactions including operations at all state agencies. Why is the majority raising this allegations at this time?

When similar allegations of massive corruption at BOST was reported to President Mahama, he did not use his party’s strength in Parliament to suppress the allegations rather,he ordered for a comprehensive investigations into the allegations raised and an independent body was contracted to do the forensic investigation Ernest and Young ( E&Y), a renowned international accounting firm. Portions of the report revealed deliberate activities of top officials at BOST who supported the BDCs to rob BOST of petroleum products at the depots leading to significant petroleum product losses that affected the national strategic reserve of petroleum products. President Mahama quickly acted on the report which revealed choreographed acts by making changes at the place replacing the C.E.O with Mr Awuah Darko. Contrary to the majority’s allegations, the appointment of Mr Awuah Darko and other major changes at the place halted the overdrawn balances at BOST. Before Mr Awuah took over, most of the key BDCs were indebted to BOST to the tune of millions of litres of petroleum products,which was projected to be in excess of tens of millions of dollars.

Another bad practice President Mahama through E& Y halted at BOST, is insufficient documentation. Prior to the investigation,some underlying documents had not been made available to support information recorded in the monthly stock reconciliation carried out by BOST and BDC officials and some BDCs. This is the very practice being introduced back into operations at BOST by the new management. The majority MPs have the Mahama precedent to guide them and will advise them to impress upon the President to act swiftly on the matter just as Mahama did than defending this obvious criminal act in the media.

THE SUBSTANTIVE ISSUE

The issue at stake is not assessment of Mr Awuah’s stewardship or, rolling in President Mahama to counter an obvious truth. NPA the parent agency of the sector  has stated emphatically that, Movenpiina Energy and ZUPOIL were not licenced to undertake any commercial activity in the downstream petroleum industry at the time the BOST boss offered them the deal. The activity according to NPA,therefore infringes on section 11 of National Authority Act,ACT 691,2005.

The second issue is the sale of the contaminated product for public consumption when Management knew it was not a good product and knew the consequences of their action including damaging engines of innocent consumers (buyers), and serious environmental consequences. These are the major issues at stake. If the majority has other issues to deal with, it has the right to do so but I don’t think theirs partisan inclinations should bury their supervisory and investigatory roles.

HISTORICAL FACTS

The problems at BOST began from 2005 and such internal deals contributed to the ToR debt which was settled by the Mills administration. These nefarious activities led to the over $600m debt ToR owed GCB and other service providers. BOST started making substantial profits after the changes made by President Mahama and records available confirm this fact. The fake figures being peddled around by the majority, shows the confidence they have in the once distressed state agency…

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