Adjenim Boateng Adjei, the dismissed Chief Executive Officer of the Public Procurement Authority (PPA), has said he feels that there was an agenda investigative journalist Manasseh Azure Awuni had: to get him out of the PPA.
Manasseh Azure Awuni, produced a documentary that exposéd a lot of rot at the PP which resulted first in a suspension and then the dismissal of AB Adjei.
According to Adjenim Boateng Adjei, after an interview with the investigative journalist, he AB Adjei asked the journalist about the kind of questions he asked which were not part of the synopsis the journalist had sent him ahead of the interview.
There and then, Manasseh Azure Awuni’s responses revealed a lot.
Adjenim Boateng Adjei disclosed to Net TV2 on Wednesday, November 11: “I asked him, Manasseh, what was actually going on? I asked him again whether he was really the Manasseh I knew, whether he was the Manasseh I could invite? But he told me and I quote him, ‘Sir this is beyond my control’. It was after that comment that I knew this was an agenda against me. “I pray that one day, he will be touched by the almighty God and play the full interview he had with me to the whole world regarding these issues.”
The sacked PPA boss indicated that he had taken interest in the journalist as his mentee because he showed signs that he wanted to learn something.
“I had an interest in him and anything he wanted to do involving procurement and so I said I would be ready to volunteer free knowledge because we all want the good for the country. I supported Manasseh in his work, I met him several times at Oak Plaza [Hotel] and I regarded him as my son. I assisted him with any information he needed about procurement. He was probably the only journalist in Ghana who had unfettered access to me. He can call me at any time…I didn’t see him as a threat,” AB Adjei revealed further.
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo in a letter dated Friday 30 October 2020, terminated AB Adjei’s appointment after he had been on suspension for about a year.
The decision follows the submission of a report to President Akufo-Addo by the Commission on Human Rights and Administration Justice (CHRAJ) on a conflict of interest investigation initiated against Mr Adjei.
A report issued by the CHRAJ noted that Boateng Adjei was unable to explain the volumes of cash that passed through his bank account with Stanbic Bank after his appointment.
The CHRAJ investigation emanated from an earlier investigative work by journalist Manasseh Azure Awuni over some contracts sanctioned by the PPA.
The CHRAJ report concluded that AB Adjei had put himself in a position where his personal interests conflicted with the performance of his functions as CEO and board member of PPA.
Portions of the report said: “The respondent (Mr Adjei) opened a USD Account at the Stanbic Bank on 03 April 2017 after his appointment as CEO of PPA. As of August 2-019, a total of USD516225 has been credited to the account and his debits stood at USD504607.87.
“When confronted with the evidence of the sheer volume of cash that passed through his accounts the Respondent indicated that Frosty Ice Mineral Water Ltd does not have a bank account and that proceeds from the sales of the water is lodged in his account. Frosty Ice Mineral water Ltd is the company the Respondent owns with his wife, Mercy Adjei. He also claimed that he received money from other family businesses but could not name the family businesses.”
A press release issued by Eugene Arhin, the Director of Communications at the Presidency, announcement the termination of AB Adjei’s appointment stated: “Having satisfied himself of the fact that the recommendation made by CHRAJ is properly motivated and well-founded, the President has expressed his appreciation and gratitude to Mr Joseph Whittal and CHRAJ for the thorough and methodical manner in which the matter has been addressed.”
The CHRAJ asked the Special Prosecutor to examine aspects of the investigative work relating to potential acts of corruption. The Special Prosecutor is yet to come out with his report.