Public Account Committee questions Attorney General over CP €94m payments

Dr. Benjamin Kumbuor - Attorney General

The Public Account Committee of Parliament on Wednesday questioned Dr Benjamin Kumbuor, Minister of Justice and Attorney General on the payment of contracts sum of €94 million to Construction Pioneers (CP) by the government.

Mr Albert Kan Dapaah, Chairman of the Committee told the Justice Minister who was with the Solicitor General, Mrs Amma Gaisie, and Naana Dontoh, Chief State Attorney, that for the purpose of additional investigations the Committee would invite him for future questioning over the issue demanding details, terms of reference and composition, minutes of the negotiation meetings and even cabinet approval for any payment if there was any.

Dr Kumbuor only tabled a document before the committee dated March 2010 which he referred to as a settlement agreement between the Republic of Ghana and the CP, saying he was not privy to the information about other issues the Committee were looking for and would need time to study the documents and appear before the committee on later date.

He said he was under an oath and could not make statements for which he might be prejudicial if incriminated upon.

Mr Dapaah insisted on an agreement between government and CP, saying the award was classified into five beginning with Takoradi Biriwa road contract and it was better to tackle them one after the other.

But the Justice Minister noted that it was a settlement agreement, adding however that they were many of such agreements, Memorandum of Understandings, contractual agreements and settlement agreement but the document he was holding before the committee was a settlement agreement.

He said the consequence of all agreements since 1994 perhaps was what has become a liability to Ghana, adding that the invitation for him to appear before the Committee only stated that he was to give account as to why about €80 million was absent in the report of the Auditor General therefore he could not give details about any other particular agreement.

Dr Kumbuor noted that there have been breaches, which dates back to a number of contracts that were made and as implementation went on subsequent projects came up.

Mrs Amma Gaisie said about 11 documents were found only on Monday and so the Justice Ministry could not give any figures because they have to study them and be sure of them.

Mr Dapaah said some €14 million was spent based on an agreement signed after the 2010 agreement in March asking the circumstance under which it was signed.

Mr Kumbuor said there have been three Attorney Generals thus it was the cumulative effect of three to four governments just to have a settlement.

The Chairman who tried all his best to get answers from the Attorney General to no avail concluded “you did not help the committee; the legality is too much”.

Dr Kumbuor said “my limitation by your estimation of not being helpful was because of the hindrance and I will not hazard an extempore replies while under oath.

Source: GNA

1 Comment
  1. Adam. says

    Dr.Kumbuor has it all right to the way he handle the chairman’s demands He thinks professionally.

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