Mr Paul Evans Aidoo, the Western Regional Minister, has directed the Police to investigate the circumstances leading to the embezzlement of GH¢506,639.39 belonging to the Bibiani-Ahwiaso District Assembly by two of its officials.
The former officials are Mr Emmanuel Owusu-Ansah, the Finance Officer, who has retired and Mr Loius K. Bayuoh, the District Coordinating Director who has been transferred to another Assembly.
Briefing reporters in his office at Sekondi, on Thursday, Mr Aidoo said a verification exercise carried out by the District Audit Service of the Assembly in respect of revenue received from the Administration of Stool Lands between January 2013 and 2014 never hit the accounts of the Assembly.
He said a printed statement from January 2012 to date showed that a total amount of GH¢506, 639.39, (five hundred and six thousand, six hundred and thirty-nine pesewas} was lodged and withdrawn from the Bibiani branch of the Societe General Ghana Bank.
The Minister said the two former officials operated secret accounts through which they lodged revenue from the Administration of Stool Lands in Sekondi and shared it.
He said Mr Bayuoh had since refunded GH¢40, 000.00, explaining that, “As at the close of work yesterday, a total of one hundred and thirteen thousand, three hundred Ghana Cedis (GH¢113, 300.00) had been refunded.”
Mr Aidoo called for extra vigilance by assembly workers while Presiding Members and Internal Auditors of Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies (MMDAs), he said, must periodically scrutinize the trial balances and other accounts of their assemblies to ensure that the revenue was used judiciously for the right purposes.
He said in view of this revelation, the Regional Coordinating Council was considering directing that revenue from the Administration of Stool Lands meant for the MMDAs in the Region be passed through the RCC for scrutiny.