Investigation Finance Minister requests for more time to respond to CHRAJ query on $2.2 bn bond

CHRAJ was petitioned by the Ashanti Regional Organiser of the National Democratic Congress, Brogya Gyamfi, to establish whether the Finance Minister breached the laws of Ghana in issuing the cedi denominated bond.

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Finance Minister Ken Ofori Atta has requested for more time to respond to a query from the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ) on the 2.25 billion bond government issued in March.

CHRAJ was petitioned by the Ashanti Regional Organiser of the National Democratic Congress, Brogya Gyamfi, to establish whether the Finance Minister breached the laws of Ghana in issuing the cedi denominated bond.

Following the petition, CHRAJ wrote to the Finance Minister, Ken Ofori Atta, to request for comment on the matter.

In a letter dated May 11, the Chief Director of the ministry, Mr Patrick Nomo, requested for additional 15 days to properly respond to the request for comment with proper documentations.

Petition to CHRAJ

Mr Gyamfi asked CHRAJ to investigate a potential conflict of interest in the insurance of the bond, saying the bond was issued to benefit a business associate of the Finance Minister.

According to him, Finance Minister Ken Ofori Atta “has attempted to promote a private or personal interest for himself or for some family members and business associates, and the promotion of the private interest has resulted in, or was intended to result in, or appears to have resulted in, or has the potential to result in an interference with the objective exercise of his duties and an improper benefit or an advantage by virtue of his position.”

In the petition, Mr Gyamfi wants CHRAJ to establish: “Was a substantial portion of the bond purchased by Franklin Templeton Investments. If so, how much?; Is Trevor G. Trefgarne a Director of Franklin Templeton Investments? Is Trevor G. Trefgarne the Chairman/Director of Enterprise Group Ltd?; and Are Dr Mrs Angela Ofori-Atta, Mr Keli Gadzekpo, Hon. Gloria Akuffo and Hon. Ken Ofori-Atta Directors of the Board of Enterprise Group Ltd?”

If not, he continued: “Were they Directors of the Board in the immediate past? Does Databank Ltd own part of Enterprise Group Ltd or any of its affiliates? Does Hon. Ken Ofori-Atta have any shares or business interest in Databank Ltd; or did he have any shares or business interest in the immediate past?

He also wants CHRAJ to establish if the Ken Ofori Atta adhered to the 1992 Constitution, the Code of Conduct for Public Officers of Ghana, CHRAJ’s guidelines on conflict of interest for public officers, and other relevant rules and laws pertaining to conflict of interest and issues of corruption.

“Should the Minister for Finance resign or be removed from office? Did the Attorney-General and Minister for Justice adhere to the 1992 Constitution, the Code of Conduct for Public Officers of Ghana, CHRAJ’s guidelines on conflict of interest for public officers, and other relevant rules and laws pertaining to conflict of interest and issues of corruption? Should the Attorney-General resign or be removed from office?

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