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21.04.2005 General News

Ghana Standards Board being milked dry

By CHRONICLE

... Last CEO retired with Board's cars, furniture, loans & cash ... Workers call for probe PAINSTAKING CHRONICLE investigations have uncovered a trend at the Ghana Standards Board by which chief executive officers who go on retirement from the place rape the Board without restraint.

The practice, which has spanned the last five years, has deprived the Board of valuable resources.

As a result a precedent is being set and the staff are on the alert because the acting Chief Executive is to go on retirement today April 21.

The staff have also called for a forensic audit of the Board covering the period under review to expose malpractices and perpetrators of such economic crime against the state.

Members of staff who dare criticize the practices there are said to have their promotions withheld, paving the way for favouritism with its attendant putting square pegs in round holes at the place.

The Chronicle has gathered that Mr. Ahenkorah Nimo, who retired in September, last year, at the age of 60, took home some items belonging to the Board without recourse to the scheme of the service of the Board.

These include a car estimated to cost ¢150 million, a set of furniture at ¢45 million and an air condition valued at ¢99 million.

Mr. Nimo also borrowed ¢45 million to purchase a car three months before his pension, as well as $2,000 from the coffers of the Board for himself.

The project car is also said to have been given out to his wife.

He has since not made any efforts to pay for those items he took away under the pretext of buying them, neither has he refunded the monies he claimed to have borrowed.

According to the scheme of the civil service, it is not allowed for any chief executive to take such things home, as Mr. Nimo did.

Before a chief executive buys a project car, the car must have been used for a minimum of three years, valued by the State Transport and report issued to the Ministry of Finance before it is released to any interested party to purchase.

Mr. Nimo ignored these procedures, according to sources.

As a case of discrimination, the Board is said to have given his predecessor, one Mr. Alex Ntiforo, a raw deal, when he was given a single band radio and a bedside clock as a parting gift in appreciation of his 35 years of meritorious service.

The acting CEO, Mr. Larry Yankey, is on record to have even refused a request by Mr. Ntiforo for a car to cart his belongings from the official residence on arrival from a medical treatment abroad.

Against this background the staff have called for a probe of the activities of management of the Board.

They also complained that the Board instituted a provident fund without notifying the Ministry of Finance.

The fund has no constitution regulating it, neither has it a manager and yet deductions are made regularly.

When contacted, Mr. Yankey tried to pass buck. He blamed the Human Resource Department (HRD), which, according to him, has a “problem” yet to be resolved by management.

He also attributed the delay in the processing of promotions of the staff to the HRD. Yankey also confirmed that the Public Relations Unit had also some problems, which would be resolved soon.

CEO Yankey also confirmed that Nimo took away those items and that he would surely pay for them, but he, Yankey, did not know when Nimo would make payment.

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