The former deputy Minister for Education, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, has strongly dismissed claims by Chairman of the Appointments Committee, Joseph Osei Owusu, that he (Ablakwa) confessed that a bribery allegation made against the leadership of the Appointments Committee and Energy Minister Boakye Agyarko was cooked up to get back at the majority and the governing New Patriotic Party for tagging former President John Mahama as a corrupt leader.
Mr. Osei Owusu, appearing before a five-member ad hoc committee formed by the Speaker of Parliament to probe the bribery allegation, said “in the conclave, after they had shown that they [Minority] were satisfied and were willing to withdraw their objection and agree for their report to be amended that Hon Osafo Maafo and Boakye Agyarko be passed by consensus, we were going to leave and I said: ‘No. There was this allegation already in the public domain, and Honourable Ayariga is the one alleged to have made that allegation, so, we should discuss that matter after meeting.’
“All the Minority members said was [that]: ‘Mr Speaker, cool down, cool down’. And I said: ‘How can I cool down? This allegation is already in the public domain’. It was at that point that Okudzeto Ablakwa said, ‘Because Agyarko said our president (Mahama) was corrupt, we were spreading the corruption allegation’. The mood in the room changed afterwards.”
But Ablakwa in a Facebook post has described the claims by Mr. Osei Owusu as nothing but a desperate, malicious and cancerous fabrication which would not be allowed to fester.
“May it be known that the so-called confession attributed to me by Hon. Joe Osei-Owusu is nothing but a desperate, malicious and cancerous fabrication which would not be allowed to fester. The last time Hon. Osei-Owusu made this same allegation, he hanged it around the neck of Hon. Mahama Ayariga, I guess he had forgotten to be consistent when he appeared before the Special Committee today.
“Let no one doubt my resolve and the extent I am willing to go to vindicate the truth in this matter…Truth Stands.”
Mr Mahama Ayariga, on Friday 27 January, claimed GHC100,000 was given to Mr Osei-Owusu by Energy Minister-designate at the time, Mr Boakye Agyarko, to be distributed to Minority MPs on the Appointments Committee with the intention of influencing them to give him the nod so he could be sworn in as Minister.
Mr. Ayariga, who is a member of the Appointments Committee, told Radio Gold in an interview that the Minority MPs rejected the GHS3000 each which was enveloped for them when they later found out that the money was coming from Mr Agyarko as a bribe.