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Anti-corruption Coalition wants persons involved in waste bins contract prosecuted

The Ghana Anti-Corruption Coalition (GACC) is pushing for the prosecution of persons involved in the awarding of an ‘inflated’ contract to the Jospong Group Companies.

The contract which required Jospong to supply the state with waste bins and bin liners was recently cancelled by the govenment for non-performance. 

Joy News’ investigative journalist Manasseh Azure Awuni had early on found that the said contract was inflated by at least GH¢148 million.

Gov’t cancels ¢362m Jospong contract after JoyNews investigation

In a release Thursday, GACC said the cancellation of the contract is not enough.

“We urge that, despite the cancellation of the contract, the Office of the Special Prosecutor pursuant to its function under section 3(1) (a) of the Office of the Special Prosecutor Act, 2017 (Act 959) should investigate the procurement infraction and prosecute same,” GACC wrote.

“The government is also urged to speed up ongoing investigations in the award of ¢194 million Fumigation contract to the Jospong Group and to apply the necessary sanctions if the contract is found to contravene the Procurement Act (Act 663),” they added.

The Coalition is also pushing for contracts related to waste management to be decentralised to enable the assemblies to award these contracts “under the supervision and monitoring of the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development.”

Commending Manasseh

The release also commended Manasseh Azure for his “perseverance and persistence” in the fight against corruption.

“…we believe journalists must be able to work in an environment where their independence and safety is guaranteed, where whistle-blowers are protected, where citizens armed with information demand better from their society and their leaders and where anti-corruption legislation is adequately and effectively enforced,” GACC said.

Watch Manasseh’s investigative piece below:

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Find the GACC release below

US$74million Jospong contract Cancelled: Government action commendable

The coalition of national anti-corruption Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) under the umbrella of the Ghana Anti-Corruption Coalition (GACC) following media publications by Joy News and the Daily Graphic dated January 9, 2019 and January 10, 2019 respectively, wishes to commend the government for cancelling the US$74 million contract awarded to Jospong Group of Companies to supply waste bins to the various assemblies for procurement infractions and non-performance.

This action comes after Joy News’ Investigative journalist Manasseh Awuni Azure found that, in the procurement of one million waste bins and 900,000 pieces of

disposable bin liners, prices were inflated by at least ¢148 million in clear violation of the Public Procurement Act 2003 (Act 663).

Public procurement is the most vulnerable to corruption because of the volume of transactions involved and the financial interests at stake. Corruption risks in public procurement are also exacerbated by the complexity of the process, the close interaction between public officials and businesses, and the multitude of stakeholders.

Transparency in public procurement not only promotes accountability but also serves an important role in levelling the playing field for businesses and allowing small and medium enterprises to participate on a more equal footing.

We believe the Public Procurement Act 2003 (Act 663) should be adequately and effectively enforced and the award of waste management contracts should be decentralized to allow various assemblies to award their contracts at the local level under the supervision and monitoring of the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development.

We urge that, despite the cancellation of the contract, the Office of the Special Prosecutor pursuant to its function under section 3(1)(a) of the Office of the Special Prosecutor Act, 2017 (Act 959) should investigate the procurement infraction and prosecute same.

It is also clear that journalists are critical players in the anti-corruption fight, therefore, to stop corruption, investigative journalists like Manasseh Awuni Azure must be commended for their perseverance and persistence to protect the public purse and we believe journalists must be able to work in an environment where their independence and safety is guaranteed, where whistleblowers are protected, where citizens armed with information demand better from their society and their leaders and where anti-corruption legislation is adequately and effectively enforced.

The government is also urged to speed up ongoing investigations in the award of 194 million Ghana Cedis Fumigation contract to the Jospong Group and to apply the necessary sanctions if the contract is found to contravene the Procurement Act (Act 663).

Yours in the service of Ghana.

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