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$55 million judgment debt to hit Ghana – Kofi Bentil reveals

Lawyer and Senior Vice President of IMANI Ghana, Mr. Kofi Bentil has revealed that a $55 million judgment debt will soon hit the country.
According to him, the debt is “needlessly caused over traffic management.”

“Ghana your beloved country is about to be hit with a $55 million judgment debt, needlessly caused over traffic management,” Mr. Bentil wrote in a Facebook post.

In November 2020, Former Roads and Highways Minister Inusah Fuseini, cautioned against a looming payment of judgment debt by the Government of Ghana if Parliament re-endorses a traffic management project already ratified two years ago.
“The project that is being implemented is coming back to Parliament and if even we allow them to go ahead, you can be rest assured that what they are going to do will be a candidate for judgement debt,” Mr Fuseini said.
The former Minister, who also the MP for Tamale Central, in the company of some members from the Minority National Democratic Congress (NDC) Caucus threw the caution at press conference at the Parliament House, in Accra, on Friday, November 6.

The government on November 6 laid a Report of the Committee on Defence and Interior on the Contract Agreement among the Government of the Republic of Ghana (represented by the Ministry of National Security), Huawei Technologies Company Limited and the China National Technical Import and Export Corporation for an amount of US 100 million for the Accra Metropolitan Area ICT-Enhanced Traffic Management Project.
The team from the Minority Caucus referenced the Hansard of December 22, 2019; and said the introduction of the report in the House was an attempt by the Government to have the House approve again an already approved US$100 million loan agreement for Accra’s traffic management.
It said on that day, the House approved the Roads and Transport Committee’s report on the agreement between Ghana (Ministry of Roads and Highways) represented by the Department of Urban Roads and Beijing Everyway Traffic and Lighting Technology Company Limited for US$ 100 million for engineering, procurement, installation and commissioning of the Accra Metropolitan Area Intelligent Traffic Management project.

The Tamale Central MP and Mr Kwame Governs Agbodza, Ranking Member on the Roads and Transport Committee, observed that the two deals were the same, but the Government had changed the name of the contractor in the initial agreement and subsequently moving the agreement from the Roads and Transport Committee to the Defence and Interior Committee.
The NDC Caucus wondered if the Government was not playing what it called “a turf game at the Jubilee House” with the project.
“Today, we don’t know by what explanation that the loan that has already been approved is coming back to parliament,” Mr Fuseini said.
Mr Agbadza wondered why there was a shift of the project from the Ministry of Roads and Highways to the Ministry of National Security.
“What has the synchronization of traffic in Accra got to do with National Security? he queried.

He added: “When they came to parliament, they told us they were going to build a control room.
“And that control room, National Security, MTTD and everybody have access to that control room so there is no question as to whether National Security can have access to that control room.”

Source: eyeghana.org

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