Minority demands full probe into 'inflated' Oslo building

The minority in parliament is demanding a national inquiry into the alleged purchase of a building in Norway to be used as an Embassy by Ghana. The demand is premised on it claims that the cost of the property has been inflated. Addressing the media on Tuesday at the parliament house, minority spokesperson on foreign affairs, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, while making other demands on the deal, insisted President Akufo-Addo comment on the issue. He demanded, “[President Akufo-Addo] must commission a full probe into this matter, we want a national inquiry into this transaction which has brought so much shame to Ghana, it has dim our image…the Norwegian press is not speaking well about us.” On the floor of Parliament on Monday, Mr. Ablakwa had argued that the ministry inflated the cost of the building  to be used as Ghana’s chancery in Oslo by about 8.5 million dollars. The ministry countered that in a statement on Tuesday, warning that such misinformation could cast a slur on the country’s image. “Such uninformed allegations and hasty judgement involving a Diplomatic Mission could damage not only the image of the country but jeopardize relations between our two countries,” the ministry said. The ministry said, in response to a publication in a Norwegian newspaper, alleging the inflation of the price of the Chancery by the owner, the sector minister directed on 12th December, 2018 that all due diligence activities relating to the acquisition of the two properties be discontinued. Read: Foreign Affairs Ministry rejects Minority’s ‘uninformed’ claims on Oslo properties But the minority in its press conference said the stance taken by government on the matter is an afterthought. Mr. Ablakwa doubted if the minister acted alone in the transaction, claiming “the whole decision came from the presidency and had cabinet approval.” He showed documents which he suggested that the Finance Ministry has already authorised payment to the owner of the Oslo property. “We want to know to what extent is the president aware of this transaction, and he must speak to this matter,” he stressed. He is also demanding for the seller of the said building to be made known.

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Source: 3news.com | Ghana]]>