On June 18th,2018, we, being mindful of our constitutional obligations as responsible citizens of the Republic of Ghana submitted a petition to the office of the special prosecutor to have John Dramani Mahama investigated and prosecuted on alleged diversion of thirteen million dollars ($13m) from the E.O Group criminally diverted into private pockets.
We as petitioners weren't surprised when the list of cases before the special prosecutor captured the former president with a charge of" using public office for private benefit ( DIVERSION OF $13M E.O GROUP MONEY). The case we are told is yet to be assigned to an investigator."
It is going to be the first in history for a former president who is seeking to be re-elected again to be put under serious criminal investigation for engaging in an unwholesome act of thievery. When the investigation starts, a lot of pressure groups are going to be formed and noise would be made as same has been witnessed in the previous years. We, shall not relent in pursuing the matter to its logical conclusion.
We, as petitioners are forced to come out with this statement as a result of some disjointed mischief put out there by former Deputy Information Minister, Felix Kwakye Ofoso who served under John Mahama's regime. On 15th May 2019, in his interview with Okayfm with Kwame Nkrumah " Ti k3 se3", he alleged that the ruling government sponsored the petition to divert attention from the current happenings in this country.
In his subtle attempt to politicise the action against his boss, he failed to pay attention to the fact that, the first Ghanaian who brought the matter of alleged diversion of the said money was their former Attorney General and part of the founding members of the National Democratic Congress. Mr Martin Alamisi Amidu who wrote an article on the matter and published same on Ghanweb.com was a principal legal advisor to the Mills government when the incident occurred.
For the purpose of convenience, let me quote below the exact rendition of Martin Alamisi Amidu in the said article for readers to appreciate the substance of the case before the special prosecutor.
“John Mahama is not a newcomer to the corrupt practice of aiding the looting of the public purse. As a condition for President Mills signing the controversial executive consent to permit the E.O. Group to assign its $300million shares to Tullow, the E.O. Group agreed to pay $13million to the government for the development of the Western Region, and they called it corporate social responsibility,” Mr Amidu said.
“It was John Mahama (as the Vice President) who orchestrated the unlawful deal which I refused to endorse as the Attorney General at the time. It was Mahama who ensured that the $13million was paid not to the Government of Ghana for the benefit of the people, but into private pockets – which the late President Mills was shocked to hear shortly before his death.
“So what is the talk of anti-corruption by this incumbent President Mahama? During his tenure, Ben Kumbour, who succeeded me as Attorney General, refused to give the indemnity that was demanded from me by this president (then as Vice President).
“The indemnity was given in December 2014 when the late Miss Aikins (who was DPP when I was Attorney General) was ordered to produce that criminal case docket I had left in her custody to an officer of the Attorney General’s office upon the instructions of this president. We are told this president is incorruptible? Tell it to the marines".
In view of the above and considering Martin Alamsi Amidu's solid credibility as an anti-corruption crusader which has never been in doubtful doubt, such a serious matter cannot go unnoticed without any action. We took inspiration from the claims in the article and decided to stick to one of them for the very action we took.
It is also quite curious that when the above statement was made on 2nd December 2016, the one who was accused failed to respond to the allegation. The former Attorney General who was exercising his constitutional right as stated in Article 41(f) was not challenged on the said serious article, neither was he invited by any state investigative body for a possible investigation.
We as citizens relied on the article to invoke section 1 of the Whistle Blowers Act,2006(Act 720) for the office of the special prosecutor to investigate and then prosecuted in the likely event adverse findings are made. With all due respect Former president Mahama cannot be above the law that, when claim anchored on criminality is made against him, it should be swept under the carpet.
The issue of his alleged criminal involvement concerning his role in the acquisition of some aircraft procured from Brazil under late Professor Mills would soon be rekindled in the coming days. He should get his lawyers ready for the battle ahead of him.
Mr.Eric Dumenu Akatsi
Peprah Kyei Baffour