Monday, 17 June

Ambulance case: Letters requesting LCs had Seth Terkper's seal - 3rd accused person

General News
Ambulance

Richard Jakpa, a businessman and the third accused in the trial involving Dr. Cassiel Ato Forson, a former Deputy Minister of Finance, testified that the letters of credit in question bore the seal of then Finance Minister Seth Terkper. 

Mr Jakpa emphasised that without the Minister's authentication seal, the letters of credit would have been ineffective.

He further explained that this authentication seal was crucial and its presence legitimised the letters of credit. 

Mr Jakpa noted that the Bank of Ghana only opened the letters of credit after receiving authorisation from the then Deputy Controller and Accountant General.

During his testimony, Mr Jakpa highlighted the procedural importance of the authentication seal, asserting that it was an essential step in the process. 

This seal, he reiterated, validated the letters of credit and ensured their effectiveness.

Mr Dzakpa's statements aimed to clarify the chain of authorisation and the role of the Finance Minister's seal in the issuance and opening of the letters of credit by the Bank of Ghana.

"It is after the documents marked as page 2 and 3 of Exhibit AK that the Former Minister for Finance [ Hon. Seth Terkper] wrote to Big Sea assuring and informed it that he was in the process of finalizing the establishment of the Letter of Credit. Thereafter, the Bank of Ghana [BOG] was requested to open the LC with the authentication seal of the Minister for Finance." 

"This is confirmed by exhibit A. Later the Deputy Controller and Accountant's General finally authorised the BOG to establish the LC by exhibit B," an excerpt of his witness statement said.

The businessman also asserted that none of the accused individuals played a role in causing financial loss to the state.

He explained that the state had accepted possession of the ambulances without any intention of terminating the contract. 

Furthermore, Mr Dzakpa noted that the government had fulfilled its commitment by making the necessary payment for the ambulances.

He emphasised that all required accessories were delivered in accordance with the contract specifications.

He thus refuted any allegations of deliberate or malicious intent to cause financial loss to the state by the accused persons.

"It is clear from the particulars of the offence charged against me that the government has itself admitted that the ambulances were supplied to Ghana. The point here I make is that since it is admitted that the ambulances were indeed supplied to the government of Ghana, it cannot be honestly said that the government sustained financial loss when government: has accepted or taken possession of the ambulances and not indicated no intention whatsoever of terminating the contract."

"The government actually committed itself to performing the contract by paying for the ambulances as confirmed in the negotiated addendum to the contract," his statement added.

Source: Classfmonline.com