Sylvester Mensah Says He Managed NHIA Funds Diligently
The former Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the National Health Insurance Authority (NHIA), Sylvester Mensah says he diligently managed the Authority during his time in office.
His comment follows the NHIA’s spirited defence for investing GHc17 million of its funds with a private company, All Time Investment.
The NDC had accused the current leadership of the NHIA of investing the said amount without due diligence and risk assessment; a claim government has described as mischevious.
But speaking on Eyewitness News on Wednesday, Mr. Mensah who admitted that he began the investment with the company said the current administration is taking for granted the proper assessment he did constantly to ensure that funds of the scheme were secured.
“Before you invest you have to undertake risk assessment, you have to do due diligence to be sure that the target you want to place your funds in, is in good standing and that would have to done and done properly. You don’t even have to secure these funds with these institutions when you have the slightest doubt…because you don't want to lose the taxpayers money. It becomes your responsibility as chief executive if you place any funds anywhere. You have to make sure you don’t lose those funds because it becomes your personal debt,” he said.
He explained that he went to the extent of securing the funds in such a way that in the event of any unforeseen circumstance, claims are still made on other investments of All Time Capital to safeguard the taxpayers’ money.
“We did due diligence, we even secured the funds…in such a way that in the event of their inability to pay, we could quickly lay claim to other investments that they had,” he said.
The NDC had accused the NHIA of diverting the said amount to All Time Capital Investment without due diligence and risk assessment.
But speaking in an interview on Eyewitness News, acting CEO of NHIA, Dr Lydia Dsane-Selby said “nothing went wrong” with the investment and that “the press conference [by the NDC] was a bit of mischief.”
“Nothing has gone wrong. We have not fraudulently put money anywhere. This money was invested in 2012.”
“Last year, we decided to take a comprehensive review of our various investments and we have since been trying to strategize our investments,” she explained further.
She said the NHIA is now “looking to retrieve and reinvest” the money adding that her outfit had written a letter to the investment firm to request the money as far back as February 5, 2019.
All Time Capital Investment replied in March saying it needed more time to provide the money.
“As at now, the NHIA's finance team remains in contact with the All Time Capital Investment,” she added.