Sam Nartey George, MP for Ningo Prampram
Some officials in the erstwhile National Democratic Congress (NDC) government purchased some of the state vehicles listed as missing by the new government.
According to the Member of Parliament for Ningo-Prampram, Samuel George, about 271 of the vehicles allegedly missing vehicles from the President’s vehicle pool were purchased by some officials of the former government. He made the revelation on Citi FM’s news analysis program, The Big Issue on Saturday.
According to Same George, although he declined to purchase the vehicle allocated to him while serving as a Presidential staffer under the former government, some of his colleagues bought theirs after the vehicles were duly properly valuated by the State Transport Company.
The Director of Communications at the Presidency, Eugene Arhin, had earlier this week revealed, that about 208 of the vehicles bequeathed to the new government by the National Democratic Congress government could not be traced.
But the Deputy Chief of Staff under the Mahama administration, Johnny Osei Kofi, in a counter statement described Mr Arhin’s claims as “false, baseless and without merit.”
However, speaking on our news analysis and current affairs programme, The Big Issue, on Saturday morning, the Ningo Prampram legislator said the auctioning was in conformity with standard practice to enable officials of the former administration to purchase the vehicles.
“A number of my colleagues chose to buy their cars. I for personal reasons declined to buy my car and I returned it to the director of logistics at the Office of President. We put out a list of 641 vehicles. We handed over about 370 vehicles to the assets and logistics committee [of the new government] and these vehicles were physically inspected by the assets committee led by lawyer Ayikoi Otu.”
“You’ll see a disparity and it is because 271 salon cars were purchased by staffers who had put in a request to purchase their vehicles which were 2 years and above.”
Sam George’s revelation appear to introduce a different twist of the story as it suggests that the purchased vehicles were also included in the list presented to the new government as vehicles available for its use.
Selling state cars to politicians ‘bush way of doing things’
Meanwhile, a retired Ghanaian diplomat, KB Asante, has said that government officials buying state vehicles they previously used is a “bush way of doing things.” According to him, the vehicles must be properly auctioned to allow interested Ghanaians buy them.
Speaking to Citi News, he questioned the logic behind such direct sales to officials, arguing that the practice will always lead to wanton abuse of state property.