President of IMANI Africa, Franklin Cudjoe, says if telecommunication companies in Ghana offer him money to further IMANI’s activism against the controversial Kelni GVG deal with government, he will not hesitate to accept.
IMANI has for the past month been critical of the deal which will see Kelni GVG operate a common platform that would among other things monitor in real time, the activities of telecom companies to ensure that government is not shortchanged in taxes.
It has argued in its criticisms that the contract is needless, dubious and does not pass value for money test, adding Kelni-GVG does not have a good reputation to be awarded such contract.
Some critics, including the Progressive Nationalists Forum have accused IMANI of doing the bidding of the telecom companies, suggested officials of the think-tank group have been paid by the telcos for that, something Mr. Cudjoe has since denied.
Speaking on 3FM’s Sunrise Morning show Monday on the Kelni GVG deal brouhaha, Mr. Cudjoe though he has not been paid by anybody to push against the deal, should the telecom companies see the need to sponsor it, he will accept it.
“If the telcos paid me money, I will collect it in order to do this work. If you are doing a good work, and somebody gives you a million to chase down people who are likely to steal 178 million, you think it is not God given?” Franklin Cudjoe asked.
He stated that the National Communications Authority failed Ghanaians in signing the said agreement with Kelni GVG.
“I think that the NCA should actually be ashamed to allow itself to be toyed with in this manner. These guys are coming to spy on us, and it is wrong to pay 178 million dollars to protect 74 million dollars which is what we get from Communication Service Tax,” he said.
According to Mr. Cudjoe, there are plans in place by his outfit to add another court case to the numerous cases filed against the signing of the agreement with Kelni GVG.
“If you look at everything that is happening with the Kelni GVG, it is in opposition to the rules public financial management and so there are many more law suits flying and in the works. This is not one of those things that we whisk away, I am sure people will be punished.
He also underscored the need for many more Ghanaians to be empowered to join activism and ensure value for money.
The IMANI boss described as fraudulent the deal between Government and Kelni GVG.
“The issue about monitoring is not needed because it is a price issue. Anyhow you look at it, it is a fraudulent deal. People should be empowered enough to say no to corruption issues because it has repercussions.”
Mr. Cudjoe argued the manner in which procurement issues are handled in Ghana among other contractual agreements give room for all sorts of questions about waste and corruption.
“The office always overruns its budget. If that ministry did not exist we would have saved 300 thousand Ghana cedis cool money. We are saying it is official waste,” Mr. Cudjoe stated.
He called for the fight against corruption and any form of shady deals to begin from the presidency where he alleges a lot of waste stems from.
By Irene Amesimeku| 3news.com| Ghana