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All Funds Of Sacked PPA Boss Must Be Confiscated – James Klutse Avedzi

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The Deputy Minority Leader, James Klutse Avedzi, is demanding that all the proceeds of the illegal sales of contracts in the bank accounts of the sacked CEO of the Public Procurement Authority (PPA), be confiscated to the state.

The Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ) found him culpable of conflict of interest.

His company, Talent Discovery Limited (TDL), incorporated on 19 June 2017, won single-sourced contracts that were later sold to the highest bidder.

The Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ) tracked GH₵ 14.8 million in accounts of the embattled former PPA boss, which sources, the commission said he could not explain.

With Mr Adjei receiving a five-year ban from public service that anti-graft experts described as a slap on the wrist, the Chairman of the Public Accounts Committee said confiscation of the funds, as well as a lifetime ban, would be in order.

“Why should he come back to public service after five years?” he questioned, adding: “He should be banned from public service completely”.

He, however, commended President Nana Akufo-Addo for terminating Mr Adjei’s contract, which he said should be the first step to further sanctions.

Mr Avedzi, who was speaking to Joy FM, described the dealings of Mr Adjei as “dubious” with a serious impact on development.

Mr Adjei set-up a company, Talent Discovery Limited (TDL), incorporated on 19 June 2017 three months after his appointed as CEO of PPA.

It was TDL which served as a vehicle for the questionable dealings in securing several government contracts to be sold to the highest bidder.

Investigative journalist, Manasseh Azure Awuni, busted Mr Adjei in a documentary titled ‘Contracts for Sale’ which was aired by Joy News on August 22, 2019.

After months of investigations, CHRAJ stated in its report dated October 27, 2020, that Mr Adjei “put himself in several positions where his personal, relational, and pecuniary interest in TDL and other companies actually conflicted with the performance of the functions of his office as CEO and Board Member of PPA. The Commission holds that the Respondent [Mr. Adjei] has contravened article 284 of the 1992 Constitution”.

“The Respondent, being the CEO of PPA, the Regulator of the procurement sector, the Commission is of the strong and considered view that he has gravely abused his high office of trust, and the appropriateness and proportionality of any action to be taken by the Commission must be commensurate with the gravity of the abuse,” the report added.

CHRAJ established a pattern of movement of large volumes of cash through the Respondent’s Bank Accounts between March 2017 and August 2019, far above his known income (Stanbic Bank: USD Account – $516,225.00; Cedi Account – GH₵3.83 million; Euro Account – EU54.500; UMB Bank: $110,000).

Mr Adjei could not offer a satisfactory explanation to the source of that huge volume of cash that passed through his bank account between March 2017 and August 2019.

CHRAJ conducted the probe based on a referral by President Nana Akufo-Addo.

The Office of the Special Prosecutor, which was also tasked to investigate the alleged corruption aspect of the activities of Mr Adjei, is yet to present its report.

The development has drawn public criticism with some members of the public calling for severe sanctions beyond a dismissal.

Mr Awuni has commended CHRAJ for its work while calling on Special Prosecutor Martin Amidu and his office to “tell us what they have been up to”.

Furthermore, he is expecting a report from the Economic and Organised Crime Office (EOCO) and stringent measures by the Financial Intelligence Centre (FIC) to scrutinize the sources of large cash in the bank accounts of public officers.

 

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