General News of Tuesday, 25 July 2017
Deputy Chairperson of the Electoral Commission (EC) in charge of Corporate Services, Georgina Opoku Amankwaa, has dissociated herself from statements circulating on social media which have also been reproduced by some news websites in connection with the raging recriminations at the EC.
“I want to emphasise that the document is not coming from me. It is worth noting that I have desisted from engaging in any media encounter over the brouhaha at the Electoral Commission, notwithstanding the negative publications about me since May this year.
“This decision is borne out of the sensitive nature of the institution and my avowed aim to preserve the sanctity of the Commission. As a lawyer and a senior public servant, I am mindful of what to say, when to say and where to say anything that affects my person and my work.
“I am expecting that an opportunity will be offered me to state my side of all the allegations levelled against me that are flying around and when that opportunity is offered the truth will definitely come out.
“I am in consultation with my lawyers, Messrs Asante Krobea Sekyere and Associates and at the opportune time, I will respond appropriately to the said allegations.
“I am by this disclaimer calling on all authors of such releases in my name whether sympathisers or mischief makers to desist from using my name in any media war and I also want to urge the general public to ignore the response allegedly coming me,” she said.
In one of such statements, Mrs Amankwaa is quoted as justifying the signing of contracts worth GHS40m on behalf of the Commission which her boss, Mrs Charlotte Osei described in her response to a petition filed at the presidency for her removal, as unauthorized.
The EC Chairperson in a long statement responding to 27 allegations against her accused Mrs Amankwaa of signing the contracts “without the knowledge and authorisation of the chairperson between July and September 2015.”
She said: “Payments were also made on these contracts in excess of her approval limits and again, without the knowledge and authorisation of the chairperson. This is illegal, criminal and a breach of the policies of the commission and the laws of Ghana.”
In Mrs Amankwaa’s so-called rebuttal, she explained that: “As a matter of principle and convention, the Chair of the Commission’s Entity Tender Committee (ETC) signs award of contract letters. As a result, the contracts under reference had already been approved by the Entity Tender Committee (ETC) which I was the chair. These contracts had been evaluated, reviewed and approved before the Commission gave the Chairperson of the ETC the mandate to sign. The contracts were in respect of procurement of election materials for the District Assembly elections.
“I was therefore in an official capacity to sign those contracts and so did I. It is important to underscore that the processes leading to the signing of these contracts had been concluded prior to her taking over as the Chair of the ETC.
“Election is time-bound and action-packed; therefore, failure to sign contracts timeously has the potential of putting the election calendar at peril. Given the fact that the Chairperson recluse herself from office without informing the deputies, there were few occasions I had to sign contracts in her continuing absence. This was done to ensure that the 2016 General Elections were not in jeopardy. This allegation is therefore frivolous, unmeritorious and borne out of bad faith,” she said.
However, a statement Mrs Amankwaa issued on Tuesday, 25 July said she has not issued any statement responding to the EC boss’ allegations against her.
EC boss debunks allegations levelled against her by unfazed staff by GhanaWeb on Scribd