EOCO probes GRA over Ibrahim Mahama’s dud cheques

The Economic and Organised Crime Office (EOCO) has invited officials of the Customs Division of the GRA to assist with an investigation into the alleged evasion of import duties by businessman Ibrahim Mahama.

Ibrahim Mahama, who is the brother of former President John Mahama, is at the centre of a headline-grabbing import duty scandal which has persisted in the media since last week.

On Friday EOCO ordered Mr Ibrahim Mahama, CEO of Engineers and Planners, to pay a sum of GHȻ12.7 million for the unpaid duties.

He is to make the payment by Monday, May 8, 2017.

He was hauled before the anti-graft agency for purportedly issuing in 2015 post-dated cheques totalling 44 to the Customs Division, being duties for imports of equipment, but which turned out to be dud cheques.

EOCO’s invitation to the Customs to answer queries about why it breached its standards comes on the heels of similar questions posed by members of the public.

Many are wondering why the regulations binding payments of duties for imports have been made different from Mr Ibrahim Mahama.

In February this year, Ibrahim Mahama and a close associate of the former National Democratic Congress (NDC) administration, Ali Seidu, were hauled before EOCO over the corruption scandal that hit the Ghana Cocoa Board (COCOBOD).

The two businessmen were summoned as part of a probe into the activities of sacked CEO of the COCOBOD, Dr. Stephen Kwabena Opuni.

EOCO’s initial investigations at the time are believed to have fingered the two in some deals at the organisation managing cocoa purchase and production in Ghana.

Ibrahim Mahama’s company was contracted under the erstwhile NDC government to execute various projects, notable among them being the construction of a platform for the AMERI power plant.