Richard Jakpa
Richard Jakpa

Ato Forson Ambulance case:  Gov’t breached contract clause on LCs —Jakpa tells court 

The businessman accused of causing financial loss of €2.37 million to the state in an ambulance deal with the Minority Leader, has told the trial court that government breached certain clauses of the contract agreement in the establishment of the letters of credit (LC). 


Under cross-examination of the Attorney-General, Richard Jakpa explained that the government breached clause 5.1 when it established the LC direct to Big Sea and paid directly to Big Sea instead of his company, Jakpa at Business. 

As a result, he said, “Jakpa at Business is not responsible for any financial loss caused to the state. It wasn't the duty of government to have raised LC direct to the principal (Big Sea) in breach of this clause”. 

Mr Jakpa, who had previously told the court that his company stopped dealing with the government after signing the contract agreement, added that following the breach, he commenced a civil suit leading to the Commercial Division of the High Court ruling that henceforth, “all LCs should be established in the name of Jakpa and the court was surprised how government was able to establish the LC in the name of Big Sea”. 

Again, answering questions on whether a 28.7 per cent of the amount paid under the transaction went to Jakpa at Business, he said, “I know it's 28 but I don't know the nominal figure”. 


Meanwhile the seal on the letter requesting the establishment of the LCs became a subject matter of cross-examination today. 

The Deputy Attorney-General, Alfred Tuah-Yeboah, who started the cross-examination today, asked Jakpa to identify from the letter the designation of the Minister on the seal.

The Deputy A-G asked, “On the right, the first alphabet after Honorable, reads deputy minister finance.

However, Jakpa said the writing was not legible. 

“In fact what you see there is Hon Deputy Minister of Finance,” Mr Tuah-Yeboah asked. 

However, Jakpa insisted he could not see adding: “The first alphabet I see is D”. 


Read also: Why Richard Jakpa was dismissed from Ghana Armed Forces for unsatisfactory conduct entered into evidence at ambulance trial

Additionally, the Mr Tuah-Yeboah entered into evidence a letter supposedly written to dismiss Jakpa from the Ghana Armed Forces (GAF).

The letter included allegations of misconduct and breach of military protocols leading to his dismissal. 

His lawyers had objected to the tendering of the letter but presiding judge, Justice Afia Serwah Asare-Botwe admitted the document into evidence. 

She said the witness had already acknowledged the document being tendered and has already said he can speak to it. 

She added that the covering letters were official documents and will be admitted to prove credibility or otherwise.


Dr Forson and Jakpa have been accused of causing financial loss of €2.37 million to the state in a deal to purchase 200 ambulances for the country between 2014 and 2016.

They have pleaded not guilty to counts of willfully causing financial loss to the state, abetment to wilfully causing financial loss to the state, contravention of the Public Procurement Act and intentionally misapplying public property.

Per the A-G’s facts accompanying the charge sheet, in 2009, while delivering the State of the Nation Address, the then President, Prof. John Evans Atta Mills, indicated that new ambulances would be purchased to expand the operations of the National Ambulance Service.


Jakpa, who is a local representative of Big Sea General Trading Limited, a company based in Dubai, subsequently approached the Ministry of Health with a proposal that he had arranged for finance from Stanbic Bank for the supply of 200 ambulances to the government.

Parliament approved the financing agreement between the government and Stanbic Bank.

According to the facts, on November 19, 2012, Dr Anemana wrote to the Public Procurement Authority (PPA) seeking approval to engage Big Sea through single sourcing for the supply of the 200 ambulances.

They added that on August  7, 2014, Dr Forson wrote to the Bank of Ghana for letters of credit covering €3.95 million for the supply of 50 ambulances in favour of Big Sea.


The letters of credit were accordingly released to Big Sea.

The facts said 30 ambulances were purchased at a sum of €2.37 million but all were found not to have met ambulance specifications and therefore “not fit for purpose”.

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