Former President John Dramani Mahama has described as “disappointing” the identification of him by the Special Prosecutor as ‘Government official 1’ in the Airbus scandal.
Martin Amidu in his corruption risk assessment report into the controversial Agyapa Royalties deal on Monday named the flagbearer of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) as ‘Government official 1’.
“This Office has established the identity of elected Government official 1 to be former President John Dramani Mahama whose brother of the full blood is Samuel Adam Foster also known as Samuel Adam Mahama,” the special prosecutor revealed.
He added: “…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.”
Reacting to the disclosure Tuesday in an interview on Accra-based Starr FM, Mahama described the claims of the Special Prosecutor as disappointingly biased.
“I’m disappointed in Martin Amidu for putting that paragraph in his report to equalize things. No financial benefit accrued to me. Not a single dollar…We are talking about a deferred prosecution agreement in which nobody’s names were mentioned and yet there’s been an inference that it must be this person, it must be that person and so legally, he doesn’t even have any basis to proceed, on what basis, on what document is he proceeding?” he said.
“What investigations has he done? Who has he spoken to? What investigation has he conducted? He should come out and tell us…” Mahama added.
Mahama is on record to have denied any hand in the Airbus deal while serving as president of Ghana.
Back in June, he broke his silence on the issue, arguing that due diligence was followed in the purchase of the two aircraft for the Ghana Armed Forces.
“Let me state without any equivocation that no financial benefit accrued to me. Neither was there any form of inducement in the purchase of the aircraft. My singular motivation was to equip and retool the Ghana Armed Forces in a manner that would make the discharge of their national and international roles efficient and less burdensome and for all the sacrifices that our men and women in uniform make, they do not deserve less,” the flagbearer of the National Democratic Congress told the state-owned Daily Graphic.
The Ghana Police Service has declared British television and radio actor Philip Middlemiss wanted over the role he played in the alleged £5 million airbus bribery.
Ghana’s special prosecutor since February launched a full scale investigation into the Airbus scandal and has released the passport details of the actor and four others online as wanted for questioning.
He is being sought after along four others in relation to the £50 million sale of three Airbus C-295 military planes to Ghana. According to the Sun, after starring in the ITV Soap, Middlemiss reportedly headed to Ghana to start making a film.
He then claims to have befriended the brother of the country’s former vice-president, before heading back to the UK.
Middlemiss lives in a smart £400,000 detached property in Greater Manchester, reports The Sun, despite him being declared bankrupt in 2012 over unpaid tax.
Documents from Ghana’s special prosecutor Amidu reveal that Middlemiss could have been a project manager for Airbus, which sold the planes, when the alleged bribery took place.
It is also alleged that he incorporated a company in the UK in 2010 through which he assisted Airbus with the suspect deal. Of those wanted two of the others are British nationals and the third is a dual national of the UK and Ghana, the Sun reported.
Middlemiss’s girlfriend Leanne Davis told The Sun she had no knowledge of any investigation. “I don’t know anything about that. Phil’s not here. I’m not sure when he’ll be back,” she said.
Early February, European aviation giant, Airbus, confessed to paying huge sums of money as bribe to government officials and persons close to the seat of government during the Mills and Mahama administration.
Court documents reveal that Ghana is among countries Airbus doled out millions of dollars as bribe between 2011 and 2015 to strike deals through secret agents.
“It was a pervasive and pernicious bribery scheme in various divisions of Airbus SE that went on for a number of years,” US District Judge Thomas Hogan said.
The European planemaker has now agreed a record $4bn settlement with France, the United Kingdom and the United States as a result of the scandal. The US Department of Justice said the deal was the largest-ever foreign bribery settlement.
The scheme was run by a unit at Airbus’ French headquarters, which its one-time chief executive, Tom Enders, reportedly called “bullshit castle”.
The disclosures, made public after a nearly four-year investigation spanning sales to more than a dozen overseas markets, came as courts on both sides of the Atlantic formally approved settlements that lift a legal cloud that has hung over Europe’s largest aerospace group for years.
Source: Daily Mail GH