PDS scandal: Minority’s petition to U.S. govt ‘disappointingly unsurprising’ – Oppong Nkrumah
The government has expressed disappointment in a petition by the Minority for the United States government to commission a formal investigation into the Power Distribution Services (PDS) scandal which has rocked Ghana’s energy sector.
The petition signed by Minority Leader Haruna Iddrisu, was personally hand-delivered to the U.S. Embassy in Accra on Wednesday, 14 August 2019, by the Ranking Member of Parliament’s Committee on Foreign Affairs, Mr Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa.
The Minority seeks to trigger an investigation under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act of the United States of America, “especially after a clearer picture is now emerging that the Akufo-Addo government stands complicit with top functionaries and cronies neck-deep in the putrescent sleaze”.
A press release by Mr Ablakwa underscored: “The Akufo-Addo government, therefore, cannot be trusted to conduct thorough and independent investigations into this scandal of monumental proportions”.
Reacting to the petition on the maiden edition of State of the Nation on Class 91.3FM on Wednesday, 14 August 2019, Information Minister, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah questioned the basis for such a petition to the U.S government.
He told show host Blessed Sogah that: “Its disappointingly unsurprising that that the Minority will choose to invite a foreign nation to come and investigate the sovereign of which this minority purports to be part…
“The U.S statement says it is happy to note the government of Ghana is investigating the matter and encouraged the government of Ghana to do so…there’s America money involved in this, the Ghana government has taken action, in fact we are told the American government is unhappy with us and the Ghana government has taken action…and we have a minority who says: ‘no, we don’t trust the government so you Americans come and investigate.’”
The government of Ghana recently suspended its concession agreement with PDS.
The decision was communicated via a press release by Information Minister Kojo Oppong Nkrumah on Tuesday, 30 July 2019.
The statement said the action to put the agreement on hold was necessitated by “the detection of fundamental and material breaches of PDS’ obligation in the provision of Payment Securities (Demand Guarantees) for the transaction which has been discovered upon further due diligence”.
The government said a full probe has been initiated into the agreement and steps have been taken to ensure that “distribution, billing and payment services continue uninterrupted”.