The Presidential Candidate of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), Mr John Dramani Mahama has described the Special Prosecutor (SP) as a "coward" for mentioning him in the corruption risk assessment report on the Agyapa Minerals Royalties deal.
In an interaction with students of the University of Ghana on Wednesday, November 4, 2020, Mr Mahama also questioned "what stupidity" motivated the Special Prosecutor to mention him in an unrelated report.
According to the former President, the Special Prosecutor mentioned his name as part of an attempt to "equalize the discussion".
He said: “Amidu goes and presents Agyapa investigations and I thought he was a man enough. They say investigate Agyapa, so present a report on Agyapa. If you have investigated Airbus, present a report on Airbus."
“In the Agyapa report, you know that it is going to be damning of this government and so you go and put one paragraph there about Airbus. Nobody asked you about Airbus. If you were man enough, present Agyapa and do a report on Airbus separately and then I will come and answer you on Airbus.
“But because he is a coward and they knew Agyapa was going to be discussed today, he put a paragraph on Airbus to equalize the discussion. What stupidity is this?”
Agyapa risk assessment mentions Mahama
The Office of the Special Prosecutor (OSP) in its observations on the Agyapa deal which it presented to the Office of the President on October 16, 2020, said it had established the identity of the elected Government official 1 in the Airbus SE scandal as former President John Dramani Mahama.
According to the Special Prosecutor, “the only reason the former President [Mahama] has not been invited for interrogation (in spite of all threats from some of his followers and lawyers) is the fact that he got himself an insurance as the Presidential candidate of the other largest political party in Ghana."
He argued that "prudence dictated that the interrogation be held in abeyance during this election season.”
Mr Amidu also indicated that former President Mahama as of now has not offered to make any voluntary statement to his Office (OSP) despite the publication of an alleged interview containing admissions purportedly made by the former President to a Daily Graphic reporter without the full voice recording which in the meantime remains just hearsay.
It will be recalled that in February this year, the Office of the President formally petitioned the Office of the Special Prosecutor, informing it about allegations of bribery in the acquisition of three military aircraft by the government between 2009 and 2015.
“We have officially written to the Office of the Special Prosecutor this morning, drawing his attention to the allegations. As a constitutionally mandated body, we expect him to take it up,” a source at the Presidency told the Daily Graphic.
Airbus, the European aircraft manufacturer, is alleged to have paid bribes in Ghana when it sold the three military aircraft.
The aerospace multinational admitted hiring the brother of a top elected Ghanaian official as its consultant for the pitch to sell the aircraft to the country.
Again, Airbus confessed paying the said consultant through a third party when its Compliance Unit raised red flags about the close relationship between the consultant and the top elected official, who was a key decision-maker in the purchase of the military aircraft.
Coordinated investigations of Airbus by the US Department of Justice (DOJ), the SFO of the UK and the Parquet National Financier (PNF) of France culminated in the company being fined $3.9 billion for its corrupt practices in Ghana, Malaysia, Sri Lanka, Indonesia and Taiwan within the same period. The $3.9-billion fine is one of the largest in the world against a corporate body.
The US, the UK and France authorities imposed the fine in a deferred prosecution agreement (DPA).
Airbus was found guilty of failing to prevent its employees and others associated with the company from bribing officials during deals for the purchase of its aircraft and other products and also for breaking US export regulations with regard to its International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR).
The DPA was approved in separate judgments by the Queen’s Bench Division of the UK Crown Court at Southwark and the US District Court for the District of Columbia last Friday.
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