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Date Set For Tarzan & Mpiani
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After weeks of hearing various allegation by witnesses who appeared before the commission of inquiry probing the activities of the Ghana @ 50 secretariat, the key players in the operations of the secretariat, are set to have their day before the Commission.

A release by the Commission indicates that Dr Charles Wereko-Brobby, the Chief Executive of the defunct Ghana @ 50 Secretariat, would be the first of the two to appear in October, whilst his boss, Mr. Kwadwo Mpiani, who chaired the National Planning Committee on the celebrations, makes his appearance on Thursday, October 15.

Key among the allegations made against the organizers are the dumping of many anniversary souvenir items on metropolitan, municipal and district assemblies (MMDAs), without assessing their capacity to dispose of them, as well as deductions from their common fund.

Between 2006 and 2007, Parliament approved two amounts of $20million grant and an $11.8million loan respectively for the celebration of Ghanas Golden Jubilee of independence attainment in 2007. In addition to the above amounts approved by Parliament for the celebrations, many corporate organizations contributed various sponsorship packages and donations running into billions of cedis towards the celebrations.

Media Majique, a respected events promoter in the country, who testified before the Commission, put the amounts realized from donations and sponsorships as exceeding 280 billion cedis! However, that not withstanding, the Secretariat left in its trail huge debts, which have set many creditors on the heels of government.

The creditors, most of whom petitioned the Presidential Commission, ranged from small-scale contractors, suppliers, consultants, to service providers. Among the various petitioners who have staked claims against the government over dealings with the Secretariat, is Largus Fort Hotel Limited, whose Managing Director, Mr. Joe Ofori, is claiming $240,000 in arrears for a two-year rental of his Largus Fort Hotel by the Secretariat.

Some witnesses have also testified receiving huge sums of cash payments on site. From Dr. Wereko-Brobby. (a.k.a Tarzan), without issuing him with receipts. The three-member commission is chaired by Mr Justice Isaac Duose, a Court of Appeal Judge, and has Mr. Osei Tutu Prempeh, a former Auditor General, and Mrs. Marietta Brew Appiah-oppong, a private legal practitioner, as members.

The commission, established under Constitutional Instrument (C.I) 61, has Mrs. Evelyn Keelson as Secretaries / Counsel. Dr. Wereko-Brobby has lawyer Akoto Ampaw of Akufo Addo, Prempeh and Co. in his corner, whilst Mr. Mpiani has been represented by Mr. Egbert Faibille of [email protected] The two lawyers have been appearing at the hearings and had cross-examined some witnesses who had come to testify. The Commission started its public hearing on July 23, this year, and has already heard close to 200 witnesses and petitioners. It was given 90 days to complete its work, and therefore has three weeks to wind up.

Many observers of the public hearings, most of which have been telecast live on the national network, Ghana Television (GTV), have been looking forward to the appearance of Dr. Wereko Brobby and Mr. Mpiani on the witness stand.
Source: The Enquirer

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