Ghana’s Attorney General Ms Gloria Akuffo has advised the Ministry of Works and Housing to consider launching a criminal investigation into the review of the contract of the Saglemi Housing project which was originally meant to construct some 5,000-housing units at a cost of $200 million.
The contract, according to the current Minister of Works and Housing, Mr Samuel Atta Akyea, was reviewed under the tenure of his predecessor Mr Collins Dauda to 1,502 units at the cost without parliamentary approval.
“In the absence of a valid explanation for the variation of the terms of the original agreement, it is advised that the matter be referred to the appropriate authority for criminal investigation,” a letter dated 8 May 2019 and signed by Ms Akuffo and addressed to the Minister of Works and Housing, said.
The AG said from the documents that had been reviewed, “there is no evidence justifying the variation of the scope of the agreement in the first and restated agreement signed by the then-Minister of Works and Housing, Mr Collins Dauda”.
Furthermore, the AG indicated that: “There is no evidence” that the Chief Director, Alhaji Ziblim Yakubu “was clothed with the capacity to review the First and Restatement Agreement of 4 January 2013” to downsize the number of houses.
The AG added that: “The agreement, having expired in June 2017, the purported notice of termination by the contractor has no basis in law and is, therefore, of no effect”.
“The ministry is, therefore, advised to write formally to the contractor rejecting the purported notice of termination,” the letter stated in response to the contractor’s notice of termination.
The AG is, therefore, advising the ministry to ensure that the contractor, Construtora OAS Ghana Limited, abides by the original contract despite the provision of 1,412 housing units with a payment of GHS180 million having been sanctioned already by the government.