‘We have every evidence to prosecute former PPA CEO’ – Special Prosecutor
“I have my firm conviction that we have every evidence to see the accused prosecuted on procurement breaches [charges]. The accused persons are the former Chief Executive of the PPA and his brother-in-law… Their pleas were taken. The pleaded not guilty, and the court has given directions as to how the trial will proceed so in a month’s time we’ll be back to comply with the court proceedings,”
The Special Prosecutor, Kissi Agyebeng, says his outfit believes that it has ample evidence to effectively prosecute the former Chief Executive Officer of the Public Procurement Authority (PPA), Adjenim Boateng Adjei.
According to him, they have a strong case that will ensure that Mr Adjei and his brother-in-law, Francis Kwaku Arhin are punished for corruption.
“I have my firm conviction that we have every evidence to see the accused prosecuted on procurement breaches [charges]. The accused persons are the former Chief Executive of the PPA and his brother-in-law… Their pleas were taken. The pleaded not guilty, and the court has given directions as to how the trial will proceed so in a month’s time we’ll be back to comply with the court proceedings,” he said.
Kissi Agyebeng stressed that the Office of the Special Prosecutor will continue to do its work to ensure that corruption is reduced to the barest minimum in the country.
“As I said during my vetting, I’m going to make corruption very costly,” he added.
Meanwhile, the two suspects have been granted bail in the corruption prosecution by the High Court (Criminal Court 3 Division).
The two who are facing 18 counts of use of public office for profit have been admitted to a bail sum of GH¢5 million with 2 sureties each.
The sureties are each to deposit their national IDs with the Court’s registry.
Mr Agyenim Boateng has also been ordered to deposit his passport with the court until the final determination of the case.
The case has been adjourned to June 28, 2022.
Mr Adjei was charged with eight counts of using public office for-profit and nine counts of directly and indirectly influencing the procurement process to obtain an unfair advantage in the award of a procurement contract.
These charges are the culmination of investigative work by journalist Manasseh Azure Awuni.
In his investigation, a company known as Talent Discovery Limited (TDL), owned by Mr Adjei, was getting government contracts through restricted tendering and selling those contracts to others for profit.
The contracts were public works contracts awarded by the Ministry of Works and Housing, Ministry of Education, Ministry of Special Development Initiatives, Ministry of Inner-City & Zongo Development, and the Ghana Ports and Harbour Authority.
According to the facts of the case, Mr Adjei once altered the decision of the PPA Board in favour of Talent Discovery Limited.
The Office of the Special Prosecutor probed the corruption concerns that emerged, while the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice looked into the conflict of interest aspects of the case.
After investigating Mr Adjei, CHRAJ found him guilty of conflict of interest, saying the money accrued in his accounts since assuming office in 2017 stood at GHS 14.8 million from his four Dollar and Euro accounts held at two banks.
According to CHRAJ, Mr Adjei could not satisfactorily explain the source of the large volumes of excess wealth that passed through his bank accounts between March 2017 and August 2019.
The Special Prosecutor also noted that Mr Adjei “amassed fantastic funds in his bank accounts within a very short time.”
“The First and Second Accused perversely benefited pecuniarily through the use of public office for-profit and influencing the public procurement process to obtain an unfair advantage.”