Ever wondered why the 2016 flag bearer of the opposition New Patriotic Party, Nana Akufo-Addo, would choose to respond casually to the alleged Ford Expedition bribe to President Mahama when in the past he had aggressively taken on the president and government at the least corruption allegation?
The three-time flag bearer of the biggest opposition party is perhaps abiding by the famous maxim; “he who comes to equity must come with clean hands” as this paper can confirm that Nana Akufo Addo himself was a recipient of a used Toyota land cruiser from a wealthy contractor.
The contractor/businessman of northern descent (name withheld) in turn, was a beneficiary of numerous government contracts under the NPP administration and as expectedly, was hoping to win more had Nana Akufo-Addo won the 2008 elections, The aL-hAJJ can report.
The 2004 model Toyota Land cruiser with registration number GE 1466 Z donated to Nana Akufo Addo in his capacity as NPP 2008 flag bearer was registered in his personal name.
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The car was later to be confiscated to the state in 2009 by the Customs Exercises and Preventive Service (CEPS) following investigation which revealed custom duties paid in respect of the vehicle was undervalued by 68.27%.
Though CEPS investigations later cleared Nana Akufo-Addo, who received the vehicle as a gift from the said northern contractor of any blame, a GH¢13,007.31 import duty due on the vehicle was restored instead of the paltry GH¢ 4,127.30 paid by importers of the car.
Apart from the shipping agent paying the differentials in the duty, CEPS further slapped a penalty of GH¢17,760.02 on them.
The donor, a flamboyant but now reclusive northern contractor who resides in Accra purchased the luxurious vehicle from Crystal City Ltd at Dzorwulu in Accra in 2008 at a cost of GHC100, 000 (or $100,000) after which he had it registered in Nana Akufo-Addo’s name.
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The aL-hAJJ can also report that, Nana Akufo-Addo’s reluctance in commenting on the alleged car bribery to President Mahama was also to avoid being exposed as a recent receiver of a Land Cruiser Prado vehicle which was to be given to his wife, Rebecca Akufo-Addo and other goodies from a Chief Executive of a state institution.
The aL-hAJJ is gathering more information following the media hints on the ‘donation’ to Nana Addo. The vehicle has since been returned to the donor (name withheld), but this paper will nonetheless, soon bring our readers up to speed on this shady affair.
President Mahama has come under intense scrutiny for accepting a used Ford Expedition car from a Burkinabe contractor. The car, Communications Minister Edward Omane Boamah explained, has been added to the government vehicle pool.
Some Ghanaians, especially functionaries of the NPP, are accusing the president of abusing his office by accepting the vehicle with some opposition MPs threatening to trigger an impeachment process. Three formal complaints have since been lodged with the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice.
While many thought Nana Akufo-Addo will take advantage of the raging issue as he is known to have done in the past to further press his corruption charges against the Mahama government, he surprisingly chose to remain silent except to have a ‘little bite’ on the issue at the International Young Democrat Union organized event last week.
“I’m sure you have been following the remarkable spectacle of our president, who has been given a $100,000 gift by a contractor and the issues that it has raised about conflict of interest, about personal integrity, code of conduct of public officers. And this is within a context where there have been persistent and many instances of proven allegations of widespread corruption in President Mahama’s government,” he stated unconcernedly.
Mr Akufo-Addo’s disinterest in the matter, The aL-hAJJ has gathered, is as a result of similar donations he had and, continue to receive which he feared could be made public if he dares openly chastise the president.
In 2014, loud-mouth NPP MP for Assin Central, Kennedy Ohene Agyapong revealed that a business man, David Kojo Anim, who is currently languishing in the UK cells for trafficking in drugs and engaging in money laundering, donated a total of 100 motorbikes to Nana Akufo-Addo in support of his campaign.
The NPP 2016 flag bearer, this paper further gathered has warned his close associates to be cautious of how they go after president Mahama over the alleged Ford bribery scandal as it could open the floodgate for the NDC to start exposing some of his shady deals.
Nana Akufo-Addo, it would be recalled, was also alleged to have illegally withdrawn £100,000 from the NPP’s contentious ECOBANK account of which a probe was initiated by Mr Paul Afoko.
The enquiry started by Afoko was to unravel circumstances under which party funds were diverted into that dormant account and how the monies were utilized, but unfortunately it also led to his (Afoko’s) suspension together with general secretary, Kwabena Agyepong and Sammy Crabbe, a vice chairman of the NPP.