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Agyapa deal is clean, case against it ‘complete waste of time’ – AG tells ECOWAS court

The Government of Ghana has formally responded to a case filed against it in the regional ECOWAS court.

A state prosecutor who represented the Attorney General, Godfred Yeboah Dame, told the court that the case against the Agyapa deal constituted a waste of time and called for the court to dismiss it.

 

 

 

The AG’s response also challenged the claim by plaintiffs that the said deal entailed corruption stressing that the said claims were merely a narration of facts that did not disclose any corruption.

Government questioned the role of Transparency International, TI, stressing that it was not registered within the subregion and that cannot access the courts.

With respect to the role of Ghana Integrity Initiative, (TI’s local chapter) and Ghana Anti-Corruption Coalition, GACC; the government said the two had failed to demonstrate that they have observer status.

“The present Application does not raise any cause of action against the Respondent. The Application is only a narration of facts that do not disclose any corruption nor alleged threatened breach of the rights of the ordinary citizens of Ghana,” Chief State Attorney noted.

In further stating the government’s case, Chief State Attorney, Dorothy Afriyie Ansah; argued further that Ghana stood to benefit from the Agyapa deal because it was structured to help the country derive maximum benefit from its mineral resources and by so doing, sustainably monetise its mineral income.

The case was lodged with the court by Transparency International, Ghana Integrity Initiative and Ghana Anti-Corruption Coalition.

The government also addressed a damning report by the former Special Prosecutor, Martin Amidu, who alleged high-level corruption in a report he did relative to the deal.

The Chief State Attorney told the court that Amidu had conceded at the time of releasing the report that it was an initial report. She continued that some of Amidu’s findings, however, do not reflect the whole truth.

Government was on March 23 ordered to pay Transparency International a sum of US$750 for the late filing of its defence.

Meanwhile, July 13, 2022, has been set by the court as Judgement Day.

Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta hinted in the 2022 budget that the Agyapa deal will be returning to Parliament for consideration.

It was one of five areas that he wrote to the Speaker that the government was interested in making amendments to.

“With regards to Agyapa Royalties Ltd, we shall amend paragraphs 442 and 443 to take out references to mineral royalties collateralisation. It is important to note that, any reference to Agyapa was for informational purposes, and as such was not reflected in the fiscal framework,” his letter to the Speaker read.

 

Source:ghanaweb.com

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Author: umsdigital

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