GHA Submits CP GHC90m Payment Certificates

GHA Submits CP GHC90m Payment Certificates

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Betty Mould-Iddrisu, Ex Minister of Justice and Attorney General

The Ghana Highway Authority (GHA) yesterday tendered in evidence payment certificates issued to Messrs Construction Pioneers (CP) at the ongoing Commission of Enquiry investigating the payment of judgement debts.

The company received €85.2million in addition to £7million during the tenure of Betty Mould-Iddrisu when she was Attorney General and Minister of Justice.

The Ghana Highway Authority (GHA) has already confirmed that CP was paid millions for road project contracts some of which the construction giant did not even execute in the 1990s.

An instance was the Akim Oda-Kade/New Abirem – Nkawkaw road in the Eastern Region which CP never executed but managed to claim loss of profit with interest from the Government of Ghana.

Appearing before Sole Commissioner Justice Yaw Apau of the Court of Appeal yesterday, the Executive Director of GHA, Michael Abieteh Abbey said they retrieved certificates covering the overlay of the Biriwa-Takoradi road project.

However, he said they were still searching for the Accra Roads certificate popularly referred to as the Makola project as well as the Obuasi township roads project certificate.

The GHA has already testified that the initial contract sum for Akim Oda-Kade/New Abirem-Nkawkaw, for which payment was made for no work done, was GH¢10.6million (¢106billion) with a foreign component of 155million Deutsche Marks.

The Assin Praso-Yamoransa road the authority confirmed as ‘shoddily done’ by CP also attracted a contract sum of GH¢1.5million (¢15.2billion) with a foreign component of 28.3million Deutsche Marks which was subsequently paid.

The Biriwa-Takoradi road was executed at initial contract sum of GH¢2.9million (¢29.5billion) with a foreign component of 49.4million Deutsche Marks and evidence already before the commission was that CP was overpaid by 44million Deutsche Marks for that project, while the Obuasi township roads were completed and the government issued a defects liability certificate.

Jacqueline Avotri, a staff officer of Economic and Organised Crime Office (EOCO) formerly Serious Fraud Office (SFO) also testified on the investigation the office conducted into the compensation claims of some of the Volta flooded areas following the construction of the Akosombo Dam.

She tendered in evidence documents covering Apaso and Makango areas and said they were yet to retrieve document covering Pae areas.

The acting Corporate Estates Officer of the Volta River Authority, Emmanuel Tetteh Martey assisted by Patrick Mireku of the Legal Department of VRA also tendered in evidence, documents covering compensation for buildings, land, farm holdings as well as list of settlers of the Volta flooded areas.

Seth Mensah Dumoga, Director of Legal Affairs at the Ministry of Food and Agriculture testified in the compensation paid Carmichael Family following the government’s acquisition of the 10,000-acre land for Aveyime Livestock Project where there is a cattle ranch in the Volta Region.

He said the ministry’s investigation revealed that Messrs Bator Agricultural Industries Limited had a link with W.F. Clarke Ghana Limited who were the original owners of the livestock project and Carmichael family run the project.

He also said the land was acquired from about 12 families but it was only the Carmichael Family that had been paid compensation since the government’s acquisition in 1976.

Mr. Dumoga said the land acquired was intact and the government intends to use it for a profitable venture.

By William Yaw Owusu

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