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A number of companies on Tuesday demanded various sums of money from the [email protected] Secretariat for jobs they had executed for which payment had not been made.

They were made up of construction firms and a public relations company.

Top International Engineering Ghana Limited, a construction firm, demanded an amount of GH˘411,184.02 from the [email protected] Secretariat as arrears of payment for construction works it carried out at the VVIP Lounge of the Kotoka International Airport in 2006.

Mr. Duan Dezhi, Assistant Managing Director of the company, who was testifying before the [email protected] Commission of Inquiry in Accra, explained that they had been harassed by their suppliers and sub-contractors for the past two years.

He stated that about half of the amount was meant for the payment of the services of suppliers and sub-contractors some of whom have already taken the company to court.

Mr. Dezhi told the Commission that countless letters to the Secretariat to meet their contractual obligation had yielded no results and prayed the Commission to help the company secure their money.

However, Dezhi’s memoranda to the Commission did not include a contract agreement document with the [email protected] Secretariat, which the commission asked him to produce together with all relevant documentation on the contract.

Mr. Akoto Ampaw, Counsel for Dr Charles Wereko-Brobby, Chief Executive Officer of the [email protected] Secretariat, agreed that the company had executed the contract satisfactorily and that the amount they were demanding was consistent with the records of the Secretariat.

Mr. Reginald Laryea, Managing Director of MMRS OGILVY (Media Majique), who also testified at the Commission, demanded an unpaid balance of GH˘37, 478.50 from the Secretariat for consultancy services.

He said the total value of jobs the company undertook for the Secretariat stood at GH˘136,184.41 out of which GH˘98,705.91 was paid.

Mr. Laryea told the Commission that the involvement his company with the Secretariat originated from an advertisement in the Ghanaian Times of May 22, 2006 requesting designers to compete for the official logo for the [email protected] celebrations.

He said MMRS OGILVY won the competition and its logo design was selected as the logo of choice after which the company was appointed design consultants on July 26, 2006 for the publication of Golden Jubilee Calendar, diary, handbook and the guidebook for the Jubilee celebrations.

The company, he told the Commission, was tasked to use its extensive global reach and network to assist with the organization, publicity and marketing of the international dimensions of the celebrations, but they realized after some time that funding was a challenge, necessitating MMRS OGILVY to concentrate on the local aspects of the celebration.

Mr. Laryea said between July 26, 2006, when the company was appointed and November that same year, raising sponsorship had become a problem, compelling the Secretariat to task the company to implement its strategic proposal to tackle the situation.

These strategies involved research, event planning, selection of handpicked and short-listed managing directors of various companies, telephone and follow-up calls, organizing a presidential sponsorship night, design and printing of invitations, pledge forms and coordination of various activities for corporate and individual citizens to contribute freely to the celebration.

He said the company’s strategy worked and “donations started flowing in”, which eventually aided the success of the jubilee celebration.

Mr. Laryea said that ideally the company should request for interest on the balance of payment which he said, was about GH˘35,000 over the period adding that as sign of goodwill, the company was willing to waive this charge provided payment was done within a month.

Mr. Akoto Ampaw told the Commission that the claim made by MMRS OGILVY was consistent with records of the [email protected] Secretariat.

Aultratech, a civil works company, also demanded an amount of GH˘40,261 as outstanding balance for the supply of wood and ceiling noggins and the installation PVC Ceiling and fixing of Kismet windows and frames at the La AU Village at Cantonments.

But Counsel for Dr Wereko-Brobby told the commission that records at the Secretariat indicated that Aultratech was owed GH˘33,230.04 and not what it was claiming.
Source: GNA

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