The Executive Director of the Africa Centre for Energy Policy (ACEP), Ben Boakye, is in favour of the Minority’s call on government to release data on all non-existent and inflated contracts approved under the Mahama administration.
Mr. Boakye said this would provide clarity on the government’s assertion that it saved some GHc5.7 billion from cancelling some contracts, at least within the road sector.
The government has also suggested it has saved huge sums of money by reviewing and terminating some energy agreements.
Speaking on Eyewitness News, Mr. Boakye said “it makes sense to publish the details so we can interrogate the numbers to be sure that that is what is actually happening. We keep hearing that some deals have been made but no data is available to support it and that I don’t think is right.”
The Minority Spokesperson on Roads and Transport, Kwame Agbodza, had said he doubted the government’s claim, which was made by President Nana Akufo-Addo during his interaction with Ghanaian media members on Wednesday.
Beyond this, as far as the savings are concerned, Mr. Boakye said some of the contracts terminated may have been because contractors failed to meet certain conditions, hence, such contracts cannot be counted as having led to savings.
Such questions underscored the need for more clarity, according to Mr. Boakye, who remarked that “if there is anything that we don’t know, I think it’s alright to just put the data out there so all of us can see.”
Corruption wouldn’t be a surprise
The concerns notwithstanding, Mr. Boakye added that, there was definitely cause to suspect that some inflated contracts were awarded under the Mahama administration.
“Sometimes, when you look at the figures and you look at how contracts are negotiated and how they rushed through the process, it makes you wonder whether everything is above board and we have had the occasion to question many of those agreements… I wouldn’t be surprised if there is an investigation and we establish that some of those contracts were purely based on some corrupt practices that allow such deals to go through.”