Accra Sewer Project CONTRACT INFLATED BY $10m …Says TJGEM





The crusade launched by TJGEM, LLC, an American-based company, against the Accra Metropolitan Assembly (AMA) and its Chief Executive, Dr. Alfred Okoe Vanderpuije, over the construction of a sewer system for Accra to check the perennial flooding of the capital city, continues unabated.

In the latest allegation, TJGEM is claiming that Dr. Okoe Vanderpuije inflated the contract sum for the construction of the sewer system, which has now been awarded to Conti Construction, also an American company, by $10 million or 200 billion old cedis.

According to their statement of claim, filed at the District Court of Columbia in the US state of Washington DC, because TJGEM’s representatives, who were negotiating with Dr. Okoe Vanderpuije for the contract, were totally non-receptive and unresponsive to the Mayor’s corrupt practices and solicitations, and refused to neither entertain nor accede to same, but instead, rejected said corrupt practices, the contract was taken away from them.

The plaintiff argued that the selection of a company whose price for the reconstruction of the sewer project was some $10,000,000 in excess of the price fixed by TJGEM, leads to a reasonable inference that the Mayor inflated the price of the sewer project, in order to receive said $10,000,000 as a bribe and kickback in the award of the sewer project contract to his own use and benefit, and to the use and benefit of other Ghanaian public officials with whom he is acting in concert in the said criminal enterprise.

‘Moreover, in violation of FCPA, the pattern includes defendant Mayor, both as a foreign official and a citizen of the USA, attempted extortion and solicitation of bribes and kickbacks from plaintiff and/or its principals, in order for plaintiff to be awarded contracts, and to do business in the Republic of Ghana. Said racketeering and corrupt practices of Mayor Vanderpuije, with the tacit agreement and sanction of defendants, continue to this moment, and there is certainly a threat that such activity will continue into the future.

‘Continuation of this pattern by Defendant Vanderpuije, with tacit agreement and sanction of defendants, is also a continuation of damages to plaintiffs. Plaintiffs further allege that this pattern contains a sequence of events, over years, that all have the same and common purpose, and that that purpose is one of egregiously deliberate, calculated and malicious, fraud and extortion, which is a “pattern of racketeering activity,” the plaintiff noted.

Quoting RICO and Hobbs (both US statutes), the plaintiffs argued that the action of Vanderpuije violates instances of predicate, and explicitly prohibited acts, as documented assertions are as follows:

 
a. FRAUD:
That the Mayor’s malicious, reckless and unwarranted misrepresentations that he and the AMA had the power to enter into the subject sewer project contracts, that the AMA had financing commitments from a US bank for the sewer project, that to the extent that the Republic of Ghana was required to enter into the sewer project contract, that he would recommend to the Minister of Finance that the Minister execute the sewer project contract between the Republic of Ghana and TJGEM.

 
(2.) The misrepresentations of the Mayor was due to the persistent pattern of racketeering activities and corrupt practices as set forth herein above and produced permanent economic injuries from the Mayor’s misappropriation of TJGEM’s sewer project work product. (3.) The Mayor made said representations in order to place himself in a position to solicit bribes and kickbacks from Plaintiff.

 
b. CONSPIRACY TO DEFRAUD:
The Defendant Mayor, Minister of Finance and Commercial Officer as agents for the Defendants Republic of Ghana and Accra Metropolitan Assembly, all acted in agreement and concordance, in the misrepresentations made by the Mayor in order to fraudulently induce TJGEM to expend time and funds in producing valuable proprietary work product, business plan and sewer redevelopment model and in order to misappropriate TJGEM’s valuable proprietary work product, business plan and sewer redevelopment model to defendants own use and economic benefit without just compensation and in order to facilitate the Mayor’s solicitation and attempt to secure of bribes and kickbacks from Plaintiff in the awarding of said sewer project contract.

 
c. EXTORTION:
(1.) The Mayor regularly holding meetings with persons doing business with the Accra Metropolitan District in Kwame Circle was done in order to avoid being overheard and to prevent third party witnesses from reporting his corrupt practices, including extortion and solicitation of bribes and kickbacks from persons seeking to do business with the city of Accra or in need of services, permits or privileges meted out by the Mayor or under his direct discretionary authority, control and decision. The Mayor used said meeting in the Kwame Circle with TJGEM’s representatives to solicit bribes and kickbacks in furtherance of his corrupt practices, conspiracy to defraud, violation of RICO and Hobbs and FCPA.

 
d. WIRE FRAUD :
The telephone and internet were used as instruments of the initial fraud, conspiracy to commit fraud, and in the continuation of this fraud, racketeering and corrupt practices.

 
e. MAIL FRAUD:
The mails were used as instruments in furtherance of the defendant’s fraud, conspiracy to commit fraud, and in the continuation of this fraud, racketeering and corrupt practices in that TJGEM’s application for a Letter of Interest was submitted to the Export Import Bank of the US through the US mails. The whole of the Mayor’s racketeering and corrupt practices and enterprise necessarily extends to Republic of Ghana and the Accra Metropolitan Assembly and thus Plaintiff has joined said foreign government and said political subdivision as Defendants in this action to answer vicariously for the actions of the Mayor.

 
COUNT IV- Fraud
The Mayor’s malicious, reckless and unwarranted misrepresentations that he and the AMA had the power to enter into the subject sewer project contracts, that the AMA had financing commitments from a US bank for the sewer project, that to the extent that the Republic of Ghana was required to enter into the sewer project contract, that he would recommend to the Minister of Finance that the Minister execute the sewer project contract between the Republic of Ghana and TJGEM. The misrepresentations of the Mayor was due to the persistent pattern of his breach of the duty of good faith and fair dealing and corrupt practices as set forth herein above and produced permanent economic injuries from the Mayor’s misappropriation of TJGEM’s sewer project work product.

The Mayor made said representations in order to place himself in a position to misappropriate valuable proprietary work product, business plan and sewer redevelopment model from Plaintiff and to solicit bribes and kickbacks from plaintiff.

 
COUNT V – Conspiracy to Defraud
The Defendant Mayor, Minister of Finance and Commercial Officer as agents for the Defendants Republic of Ghana and Accra Metropolitan Assembly, all acted in agreement and concordance, in the misrepresentations made by the Mayor in order to fraudulently induce TJGEM to expend time and funds in producing valuable proprietary work product, business plan and sewer redevelopment model and in order to misappropriate TJGEM’s valuable proprietary work product, business plan and sewer redevelopment model to defendants own use and economic benefit without just compensation and in order to facilitate the Mayor’s solicitation and attempt to secure of bribes and kickbacks from Plaintiff in the awarding of said sewer project contract.

 
COUNT VI – Extortion
The Mayor regularly holding meetings with persons doing business with the Accra Metropolitan District in Kwame Circle was done in order to avoid being overheard and to prevent third party witnesses from reporting his corrupt practices, including extortion and solicitation of bribes and kickbacks from persons seeking to do business with the city of Accra or in need of services, permits or privileges meted out by the Mayor or under his direct discretionary authority, control and decision.  The Mayor used said meeting in the Kwame Circle with TJGEM’s representatives to solicit bribes and kickbacks in furtherance of his corrupt practices and conspiracy to defraud. To be continued .


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