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NDC MP: Bribe Ministers Must Go   
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President Atta Mills
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President Atta Mills has come under a suffocation pressure to prove his claim that he is committed to fighting corruption. This follows the call, yesterday, by National Democratic Congress (NDC) MP for Shai-Osudoku.

David Tetteh Assumeng, for the immediate resignation of government officials mentioned in a London court as having pocketed almost half a million pound sterling of dirty bribe money from Mabey & Johnson (M&J), a UK construction firm. The bold call from the NDC MP, a cadre and darling boy of Jerry Rawlings, NDC founder, comes at a time when civil society groups are claiming that President Mills’ apparent lack of will power to call for the resignation of the said officials in his government may be because he was a direct beneficiary of the said bribe money and that his 2000 campaign to become president was partly financed with it.

Yesterday’s bombshell from David Assumeng coincides with a call from Nana Akufo-Addo, the New Patriotic Party (NPP) presidential candidate for the 2008 election, that in other jurisdictions, the government officials implicated in the scandal were asked to step aside for a thorough investigation to be conducted and that the same should happen in Ghana, especially when many Ghanaians are expressing this view.

This is the first time Nana Addo is wading into the M&J scandal and according to him, the matter is a straightforward one and the wheel needs not be re-invented; in that in Ghana, it is the Commission on Human rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ) and the law enforcement agencies that have the constitutional mandate to investigate allegations of corruption against government officials.

He however begged to hold his comments and in the meantime wait for President Mills to take a decision on the matter based on what advice he gets from the Minister for Justice and Attorney General, Betty Mould-Iddrisu, who just returned from a fact-finding mission in the UK where she was reported to have met with officials of the British Serious Fraud Office in London.

Hon. Assumeng in firing the salvos yesterday explained that the NDC was voted into power on the catch phrase of probity and accountability and the continuous presence of the said government officials was a direct indictment on the moral authority of the Mills Administration.

He described himself as a former cadre and activist of the defunct Provisional National Defence Council (PNDC) and maintained that since what is good for the goose is good for the gander, Dr. Sipa Yankey and a host of other government officials named in the scandal should not wait for the President to push them out, but must on their own resign, apparently referring to the former Minister for Sports, Muhammed Muntaka Mubarak, who abandoned his Ministerial position after he was found to have been involved in suspected fraudulent practices.

Meanwhile, Daily Guide has gathered at press time that the Attorney General was in a closed door meeting with President Mills over her findings in the UK and that she did not find anything different from what the London Serious Fraud Office gave to the Southwark Court where officials of M&J themselves confessed that they indeed gave the said bribes to the Ghanaian government officials and that there are bank accounts and statements as evidence.

The Alliance for Accountable Governance (AFAG), a pressure group, yesterday told a news conference in Accra that President Mills must come clean and purge himself of his suspected involvement so as to save Ghana the embarrassment the country is facing both locally and internationally over the bribery scandal.

Source: Daily Guide

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