The Minister for Transport, Kwaku Ofori Asiamah, has directed the Board of the Ghana Maritime Authority (GMA) to investigate why the Authority allegedly spent GH¢10,652.05 on eight persons in a single meeting last year as reported in the media.
The directive follows a crunch meeting the Transport Minister had with the Board and the Director General of the GMA, Monday, October 29, 2018.
In a statement issued thereafter, the Transport Minister said “I have directed the Authority to investigate the allegations and report to me for necessary action”.
A leaked memo, Wednesday, October 24, 2018, suggested the GMA spent GH¢10,652.05 on lunch for eight persons in a single meeting last year (2017).
The food was said to have been provided by Luxe Suites Hotel in Accra.
The said memo dated November 8, 2017, has attracted lots of criticisms from a cross section of the public, with many wondering why GH¢10, 652.05 of the tax payer’s money could be spent on eight people in just a single meeting.
Others are also raising issues of conflict of interest against the Director General, Mr. Kwame Owusu, who is said to be also allegedly responsible in overseeing the growth of Luxe suites hotels as Group Chairman.
The Authority has since justified why it spent that amount of money on food but refuted claims that only eight people benefited.
In a statement issued on Thursday, October 25, 2018, the Authority said there was “a misrepresentation of facts”.
According to the Authority, the leaked memo on which a pen had been used to write “for 8 participants” was doctored.
“The fact is that the memo making the rounds has been doctored by the ‘writing of 8 persons’,” it said.
It explained that the amount quoted was “the cost of food for different meetings (management and stakeholders) held on 31 October, 2017, 6 November 2017 and 8 November 2017”
“Members for stakeholders meetings alone number well over 40 at a sitting aside the management team. From the above, it is clearly evident that the amount could not have been the cost of food for eight persons in a meeting as being portrayed,” it noted.
The statement however, failed to address the issue of conflict of interest by the Director General of the GMA.