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When A President Receives Car Gift From A Beneficiary Of Procurement Abuses   
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“I still can’t understand why the GH¢3.6 million rebranding of 116 buses project was awarded to Selassie Ibrahim’s company, Smarty’s Management and Production, without passing through the tendering process just like the way the $510 million Ameri Scandal deal was initiated. Mr President, the way Ghana’s procurement process has consistently been undermined under your watch leaves much to be desired. It’s clear you are not willing to give the Ghanaian people value for money in any business you transact on their behalf, and I ask if Ghana was your private business, would you have been happy with the way things are going?”

This was a post a worried Ghanaian put on his Facebook wall recently in the wake of the Smartys and Ameri scandals.

And the post certainly captures why President John Dramani Mahama has been handling the affairs of the country the way he is doing now, just as it captures the worries of all well-meaning Ghanaians.

Corporate Ghana is not a private business enterprise President Mahama inherited from his father, hence the extent to which he has reduced governance to a money-making enterprise, characterized by corruption, naked stealing and looting of the national coffers.

Now, the fact cannot be gainsaid that governance in Ghana under the leadership of President Mahama has been reduced to the business of creating opportunities for the purposes of amassing wealth at the expense of the collective good of the country.

That is the why he has been supervising the direct abuse of the procurement process to give contracts to his allies who obviously pay him back in kind and cash.

The accounts for why Mrs Selassi Ibrahim’s Smarty’s Management and Production, for instance, was motivated to charge about GH¢3, 649,044.75 for just re-branding of 116 buses for the Metro Mass Rapid Transit, which were imported at an obviously inflated cost of $250,000 each, five times the original cost of $50,000.

It is now clear that President Mahama’s appreciation of governance is an opportunity to amass wealth. And the confirmation is seen in the many dubious and corruption-laden deals that have been used by his government to fleece the nation of millions of cedis that could have otherwise been used to carry out projects to better the lives of the people.

And, in almost all these cases, the name of President Mahama has always been directly associated with the scandalous deals through which monies have been siphoned from the state coffers. Talk about the abortive Korean STX deal, the dubious Brazilian Embraer Jet deal, the American Amarjalo deal, and the name of President Mahama features at the very heart of the deals, just as he is directly associated with many phantom projects that were used to siphon funds from the national kitty on the eve of the 2012 general elections: the GYEEDAs, the Asongtabas, the LESDEPs, the SUBAHs and many more.

When he was recently asked in an interview with the BBC about whether or not he had taken bribe before, he could not answer the question immediately, just as his answer was not direct. He first asked if the interviewer was referring to him as a president or person. Even though, he later struggled to answer the question in the negative, the conclusion drawn by many people was that President Mahama had taken bribe before, and was only telling lies.

Now, many think his “cup is full” with the disclosure by a Burkinabe contractor that he gave a Ford Expedition vehicle to him, after he had apparently circumvented the procurement process to enable him secure some juicy contracts for which he parted with unreasonably huge sums of money.
Source: Daily Statesman

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