General News of Monday, 24 February 2020
Source: Today Newspaper
The comeback of former President John Dramani Mahama has become a nightmare for the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) government, Today can authoritatively report.
The NPP, who perhaps thought Mr Mahama after his defeat in the 2016 polls would not seek a comeback has been struggling to deal with the Mahama factor since his [Mr Mahama’s] announcement to lead his party again in the 2020 election, and his subsequent election as the 2020 flag-bearer of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC).
And having failed in their attempt to continue tagging him [Mr Mahama] as corrupt and incompetent leader, the ruling government, according to sources within the corridors of power, has now resorted to the use of fake petitions to fight him.
For example, a petition dated July 23, 2019 purported to have been written to the Special Prosecutor by two leading members of the NPP (names withheld) in Akwatia in the Eastern Region asked the Special Prosecutor to investigate Mr Mahama.
The said petition, sighted by Today, which bore the title; “Petition to Investigate former President John Dramani Mahama,” appealed to the
Special Prosecutor to investigate allegations of corruption and bribery, money laundering, illegal acquisition of state lands, over contracts pricing and investments and properties abroad against former President John Dramani Mahama.
According to the petitioners, Mr Mahama who was the Vice-President of the Republic of Ghana, from 2009 to June 24 2012, and the President of
the Republic of Ghana from 2012 to 2016 used his positions as second and first gentleman of the the land respectively, to amass illegal wealth.
On the issue of corruption and bribery, the petitioners alleged that Mr Mahama used his younger brother, Ibrahim Mahama, to front for loads of
government contracts which inured to his benefit.
“Many universal banks and savings and loans companies which acquired their licenses paid bribe to Ibrahim Mahama who acted as middleman between the Bank of Ghana (BoG) and his brother (Mr Mahama),” the petition read in part.
It also alleged that Mr Mahama was a shareholder in the defunct Heritage Bank, Ideal Finance and Beige Capital.
Concerning the NDC leader’s investments and properties abroad, the petitioners also alleged that former President Mahama acquired two buildings in South Africa – one in Beliville in the Western of South Africa and the other Butterworth in the Eastern Cape.
“His other properties including hotels are in Dubai in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Dortmund in Germany and Kentucky in the United States of America (USA). He also has oil investments in Saudi Arabia and Angola,” the petition further alleged.
The agenda, Today investigations uncovered, was to compel the Special Prosecutor to torment the life of Mr Mahama with persistent probe so that he would not have the peace of mind to campaign.
This was confirmed when this reporter contacted those who signed the petition in Akwatia.
Interestingly, it came out that the two gentlemen whose signatures appeared on the petition did not know anything about the allegations against Mr Mahama.
They told Today that the decision for them to pen their signatures on the petition came from the Asylum Down headquarters of the NPP.
“We were there when our party constituency leaders asked us to go to Accra for a special assignment. It was at the party head office that we were told to sign the said petition. Initially, we were reluctant to do that but after further explanation and a juicy contract promise we obliged to do it,” one of the petitioners said.
“Although they failed to mention the kind of contact they were given, they said it was “too good to reject.”
Also, they indicated that since they weretold by some national executives of the party in Accra that the presidency was aware, and was also in support of the move they were not afraid to sign the petition.
“We were told there were loads of evidence to support the allegations against Mr Mahama which may even force the NDC to change him (Mr Mahama) as their Candidate,” the petitioners said.
Meanwhile, our checks at the Office of the Special Prosecutor showed that the said petition turned out to be fake as all the evidence the petitioners provided to support theirclaims were not true.
According to a deep throat source at the Office of the Special Prosecutor, when the petitioners were asked to provide better and further particulars to back their allegations they failed to do so.
“In fact, they also failed to honour our invitation to help us probe the allegations, and that made the Office come to the conclusion that they only wanted to malign the former President,” the source told Today.
“Even before President Akufo-Addo directed Mr Amidu to investigate the Airbus scandal, the Office of the Special Prosecutor had received several petitions against former President Mahama and some of his appointees from some members and sympathisers of the NPP,” the source added.