Bus branding saga AG must prosecute culprits involved in Smarttys deal - OccupyGhana

The Chief of Staff, Mr Julius Debrah, ordered the Attorney General to probe the contract and report back to him.

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Pressure group, OccupyGhana, has tasked the Attorney General to prosecute all persons involved in the 116 Metro Mass Transit (MMT) buses conducted by Smarttys Management and Production Limited.

The branding of the buses was done at a cost of GH¢3.6 million.

OccupyGhana in a 20-page document submitted to the Attorney General, Marrietta Appiah-Oppong, said, she must apply the law guiding government contracts known as AFRC Decree 58, 1979, where offenders face up to 10 years jail sentences.

Related: AG ordered to release Smarttys contract

Smarttys Management has however refunded some of the amount but OccupyGhana said the repayment was unsatisfactory.

Selassie Ibrahim, CEO of Smarttys Management and Production play

Selassie Ibrahim, CEO of Smarttys Management and Production

 

Meanwhile, Ace Ankomah, a member of the group, speaking at press conference, said: "Government has had a year to take action but all that has happened is a resignation and a partial refund. …This is not enough, the people are keeping monies that they don’t deserve, the law demands that we punish the people who were engaged in this transaction. What has happened with that? How do you fight corruption by simply taking a partial refund?"

See more: Minority accuses Smarttys of overpricing new contract by $9m

According to him, "The law demands that every dime of the money be returned to Ghana, every pesewa must come back, and the people who did this must be punished or else tomorrow somebody will do it and pay a partial refund. Then let’s all begin to steal and do partial refunds, but unless and until we put people before court and Ghanaians know that at the very least, you will pay three times the monies lost to Ghana, we will never stop corruption."

See also: 'Smattys deal does not make sense' - Bawumia

Context

The branding of the new Chinese Huanghai buses for the MMT with portraits of John Mahama and past presidents caused public outcry, resulting in the resignation of the Minister of Transport, Ms Dzifa Attivor, in December 2015.

See related: Minority calls for review of $98 million Smarttys electrification deal

Subsequently, the Chief of Staff, Mr Julius Debrah, ordered the Attorney General to probe the contract and report back to him.

The Attorney General presented her report on December 22, 2015, directing the refunding of money found to have been overpaid to Smarttys in the contract.

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