General News of Monday, 24 July 2017
Four personnel of the Ghana Police CID stormed the Accra residence of the former Minister of Power Dr. Kwabena Donkor to search his house over investigations into the Ameri deal.
The team led by an Assistant Superintendent of Police went with a search warrant and searched the “whole house” and took away the former Minister’s laptop and pen drives.
Speaking to Starrfmonline.com, Dr. Donkor, who is also the MP for Pru East, said the CID team “searched my Study, the children’s room” in an operation which lasted for about three hours.
According to him, the search warrant read that he was being investigated as a “suspect” for “causing financial loss to the state” over the Ameri deal.
“I have nothing to hide on Ameri,” he told Starrfmonline.com. “I’m a citizen of this country… I’m prepared to meet them in court.”
Meanwhile, government officials have described the $510 million contract between Ghana and Africa and Middle East Resources Investment (AMERI) Group as a “stinker.”
“It is a stinking deal,” a high profile personality at the Jubilee House whispered to Starrfmonline.com after studying the Transition Report in February this year.
The Ameri Group was contracted by the John Mahama-led administration to supply gas turbines to Ghana. It has emerged that the young oil-producing country paid $290 million more than it should for the $220 million power generators.
An in-depth investigation into the deal by Norwegian newspaper Verdens Gang (VG) in December 2015 alleged the NDC government paid more than the actual price for the turbines on the international market.
Starrfmonline.com can confirm the economic management team of the new administration has deliberated over the deal and has the blessing of President Akufo-Addo to review the “stinking contract.”
“We can save Ghana a lot if we are able to get the right things done with this particular contract. It’s quite sad and after reviewing it, if we find out that some officials are culpable of any criminality we’ll allow the law to take its course,” the source at the presidency remarked.
“There are aspects of the deal which are not public and that also contribute to the high cost of electricity in this country. Once we are able to fix some of these things, the ordinary Ghanaian will begin to feel some reprieve.”
The former Minister of Power Dr. Kwabena Donkor is on record to have defended his government, saying there was nothing shady in the deal.
According to a December 15, 2015 edition of the Daily Guide, Dr Donkor claimed that as a build-own-operate-transfer, the NDC government “has not made any payments to Ameri and will not be making any payments for the cost of the equipment,” and that “per the agreement with Ameri, the Government of Ghana through the Volta River Authority (VRA) will only make payments to Ameri for power produced and supplied to the VRA just like any other Independent Power Producer (IPP).”
He said Ghana is required to provide “a standby Letter of Credit (LC) for an amount of $51 million, which LC has been raised.
“It must also be explained that the quoted price of $220 million in the Norwegian story for outright purchase of similar turbines is exclusive of all other costs such as auxiliaries, balance of plant, civil works, sub-station, installation of equipment, cost of financing, operation and maintenance, etc.”