A leading member of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) has accused the governing National Democratic Congress (NDC) of deliberately setting up phoney and ghost companies in the lead up to the 2012 elections for the sole purpose of illegally diverting state funds into sponsoring the party’s re-election bid.
According to Gabby Asare Otchere-Darko, the Danquah Institute Executive Director, majority of the companies in question have been found to be non-existent.
He claims the companies were set up barely six weeks to the December 2012 general elections.
Mr. Otchere-Darko made the allegation during a discussion of the Ghana Youth Employment and Entrepreneurial Agency (GYEEDA) programme report which has indicted some companies operating different modules of gross financial malfeasance and corruption.
He claimed he had possession of so many cheques and documents to prove his allegation.
“…I’ve seen the list of beneficiaries; they are companies – as if the company has franchise – these are supposed to be cottage industries.
“You can see the name, about 10 names and they keep repeating from one town to the other and what it appears [is that], its as if these things were set up – fake companies were set up – for monies to be paid for the purposes of election and nothing else because I can’t understand it that hundreds of millions of Ghana cedis were released six weeks, seven weeks, eight weeks before elections.
“Being paid to beneficiaries companies that on the face of it, we’ve sent people to some of these towns [and] the companies don’t exist”, Otchere-Darko alleged on Joy FM’s news analysis programme Newsfile on Saturday August 10.
According to him, “some of these cheques issued from Stanbic – there are about four banks involved – we have all these details and then they’ve listed so called beneficiaries under Ghana Commercial Bank accounts and when you go, these companies you will not find them on the ground so who were the beneficiaries? And this is how our money have been depleted…”.
Gabby Asare Otchere-Darko believes the alleged wanton dissipation of the State’s kitty for campaign purposes by the NDC in the lead up to the 2012 elections is largely to blame for the country’s 8.7 billion cedis deficit for last year.
“…We had 8.7 billion deficit last year; take out about 2.7 billion from the so called single spine that we are making a lot of noise about, for the same year 2012, we did not even meet our capital expenditure when it comes to fixing roads and the rest of it, yet we managed to accumulate the biggest deficit ever in our history and the biggest chunk of it happened in the last few months of the elections”.
Fellow discussant on the same programme, Chris Ackumey, who is a member of the NDC’s Communication team, however challenged Mr. Otchere-Darko to prove the allegation which he described as “hallucinations”.
“…Who are the beneficiaries of these cheques?” Chris Ackumey demanded.