This follows months of interdiction for various acts of gross misconduct and mismanagement of funds meant for EDIF’s National Mango Plantations Development Programme.
A statement in Accra, on Tuesday, said the two others sacked by the EDIF Board at a meeting on March 15, 2012 are the Director of Audit, Mr Kwabena Hemeng-Ntiamoah and Director of Finance, Mr Joseph Attah-Quansah.
The EDIF Board said it was waiting for the report of the Auditor-General “on the quantum of funds misappropriated and evidence of personal gain to determine whether the officers are liable for criminal prosecution for their actions”.
The statement said the three officers were interdicted in October 2011 when a review of quarterly financial reports revealed that disbursements made in the first quarter of 2011 were without the requisite Board approvals.
The review, according to Professor Francis Dodoo, Chairman of the Board, also confirmed that Mr. Antwi-Agyei usurped the authority of the Board and wrote informing 38 farmers on March 4, 2011, that the Board of EDIF had approved a recoverable facility to support their production of mangoes for export.
The statement explained that EDIF, with the approval of the Minister of Trade and Industry, Ms Hanna Tetteh, set up a Special Committee, which concluded that Mr. Antwi-Agyei did not adhere to laid down procedures of seeking Board approvals for disbursement.
His explanations were found to be unacceptable and it was concluded that he failed “to exercise due care in the execution of the 2011 Mango Project disbursements”.
The statement said new evidence had come to the attention of the Board that Mr. Antwi-Agyei had conducted an improper and irregular procurement of tractors for beneficiaries of the project.
“The improper procurement breached procurement laws and internal procedures and exposed EDIF to significant financial loss,” said the statement.
“It appears that these fresh revelations of gross misconduct precipitated the dismissal of Mr. Antwi- Agyei. The other two officers were similarly dismissed for their roles in the irregular procurement of tractors.”
The statement said a Bureau of National Investigations report had also implicated the affected officers in some procurement malpractices.
“The good corporate governance practices now at play at EDIF have already consumed a board member, Nana Yeboa Kodie Asare II, who has since resigned.
“He was cited in a conflict of interest situation, when he chaired a meeting that approved funds for a number of companies, including one that he had personal interest in but failed to declare that interest. Subsequently, it was found out that the farm did not qualify for the facility,” the statement said.