The ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) has cited former President John Mahama as the person referred to by the Crown Court at Southwark in the UK regarding the Airbus huge bribery scandal.
Airbus was fined $3.9 billion on Friday, January 31, 2020, in the United Kingdom for payments of bribes to secure deals in some countries including Ghana, Malaysia, Sri Lanka, and Taiwan.
The aerospace company was fined by the Crown Court and the Serious Fraud Office of the United Kingdom.
According to the statement of facts in the case, between 2009 and 2015, “a number of Airbus employees made or promised success based commission payments of approximately €5 million to intermediary 5”.
Intermediary 5, according to the judgment, is a close relative of a high ranking elected Ghanaian Government official.
Late President John Evans Atta Mills and former President Mahama were in power jointly between 2009 and January 2017.
However, the judgment did not mention of any officials suspected to have been involved in the scandal, citing the need for fair trial and protection of human rights as the basis for not disclosing the names of those behind the rot.
However, there has been speculations in Ghana, particularly in the media that Mr. Mahama is involved in the scandal.
The speculations have been based on the fact that the late President Mills set up a committee in 2011 to probe alleged corruption in the procurement of some three aircraft for the Ghana Armed Forces.
But the NPP claims the unnamed ‘Government Official 1’ in the Airbus bribery scandal is former President John Dramani Mahama, now presidential candidate of the NDC for the 2020 Elections.
At a press conference in Accra on Monday, the Communications Director of the NPP, Yaw Buaben Asamoa, said Mahama should tell the country what he knows about Government Official 1 and the processes leading to the purchase of the aircraft form Airbus SE.
“… Notwithstanding the referral to the OSP, it is important to note that the former Hon Attorney General’s intervention on behalf of candidate Mahama is very weak and unable to directly respond to the hard facts as put out by the United Kingdom Serious Fraud Office (SFO),” he said.
He added that “It is therefore necessary that former President, now Candidate John Dramani Mahama responds directly to the issue himself.”
He noted that the serious nature and processes involved in the accusations demand immediate action to remove any dents on the image and reputation of Ghana.
“The companies used to receive the bribe money have been named. The shareholder who is very close to the former President has been named. Document falsification, kickbacks, lies and overpayments is what the Airbus scandal is all about. And it appears John Mahama is deeply involved,” according to him.
“Candidate Mahama is no stranger to speaking to the international community. He has been known to assemble diplomats even if he has nothing to say except lies as demonstrated in the false tapes saga of Ayawaso West Wuogon Constituteuncy matters,” he said.
Mr Asamoa claimed this is just one of Mahama’s corruption scandals, where he personally led the negotiations and for his close associate to execute on his behalf and collect the bribes.
“… The Airbus issue appears similar to the Embraer investigations, which then Attorney General, now OSP, Martin Amidu, was tasked by President Mills to do but was aborted in mysterious circumstances,” he noted.
BY Melvin Tarlue