The National Democratic Congress (NDC) has advised President Nana Akufo-Addo to instead of the Airbus bribery scandal, investigate what it described as more significant corruption allegations.
Addressing the press in Accra on Thursday, the National Communications Officer of the NDC, Sammy Gyamfi, said: “If President Nana Akufo-Addo cares to investigate this matter which clearly contains no fact or evidence of wrongdoing, we are telling him there are so many issues to investigate.”
Arguing that the NPP government was prioritizing less significant corruption allegations, Mr. Gyamfi said the President must start “by telling us why he himself gave executive approval for an AMERI deal which was bloated by an amount of US$800 million. He should tell us why the PDS transaction was terminated and led to Ghana losing a whopping US$190 million.”
“You are going to investigate success based commission of €3.8 million paid by a private company to their own agents? That is what President Akufo-Addo prioritises,” Mr. Gyamfi stated.
The NDC also held that the identity of one of the persons cited as “Government Official 1” who was described as a high ranking official was not necessary.
The New Patriotic Party has come out to claim the said official is NDC flagbearer, John Mahama.
But Mr. Gyamfi insisted that the NDC could state “with a large degree of certainty that the UK SFO [Serious Fraud Office] would have stated that bribes were paid to the said GO1 if they had found so in their investigations.”
He added that “to the extent that the said Government Official 1 is not cited for any offence in any of the approved judgement, his or her identity is completely immaterial.”
On January 31, Ghana was cited as one of five countries in which global aerospace group, Airbus SE, allegedly bribed or promised payments to senior officials in exchange for business favours between 2009 and 2015, according to the UK’s Serious Fraud Office.
This led to a record £3 billion in settlement by Airbus with France, the United Kingdom and the United States to avoid corporate criminal charges.
President Nana Akufo-Addo has since referred the Airbus bribery scandal to the Office of the Special Prosecutor for investigations.
These investigations are expected to be conducted in collaboration with UK authorities, according to a statement from the presidency.
Payments in Ghana
In the case of Ghana, the court found that the company’s bribe was to land the contract of purchase of a military transport aircraft.
“Between 1 July 2011 and 1 June 2015 Airbus SE failed to prevent persons associated with Airbus SE from bribing others concerned with the purchase of military transport aircraft by the Government of Ghana, where the said bribery was intended to obtain or retain business or advantage in the conduct of business for Airbus SE,” the court’s statement of offence noted.
The documents indicated that one of the unnamed Ghanaian officials was “a key decision-maker in respect of Government of Ghana aircraft orders.”
A number of Airbus employees “made or promised success-based commission payments of approximately €5 million” to one of the Ghanaians implicated in acts of corruption.