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Those responsible for breaches in GRA/SML deal must be punished – Dr. Arthur Kennedy

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Prominent figure known for his roles as a physician, author, and politician, Dr. Arthur Kobina Kennedy has spoken out about the contractual breaches involving the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) and Strategic Mobilisation Limited (SML), emphasizing the need for accountability.

In an interview on JoyNews’ AM Show, Dr. Kennedy expressed concern over the violations of laws in the GRA’s dealings with SML, particularly highlighting the lack of approval from the Public Procurement Authority (PPA) for sole sourcing contracts and the absence of parliamentary oversight.

He stressed that individuals responsible for these breaches must face consequences and called for a reevaluation of contracts awarded against legal protocols.

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“The SML situation is terrible. A lot of laws were breached in sole sourcing without approval from the Public Procurement Authority, and Parliament didn’t play the role it was supposed to play.

“I think that all those contracts which were awarded contrary to our laws, people cannot benefit from breaking the law, so we need to pull those things back,” he said on JoyNews’ AM Show.

His remarks were made in response to the release of the full KPMG audio report on the GRA-SML agreement, which revealed multiple service agreements entered into without proper authorization and oversight.

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“We need to go back and collect their taxes and we need to find out those who were sleeping behind the wheel or looked the other way and why all these things happened when they should have been doing their job.

“I think basically it lays bare the fact that we honour our constitutional structures when in breach even though these things are there on paper. So when powerful people decide that they want to do something, they ignore them and that is a classic example of what we are witnessing,” he stressed.

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Dr. Kennedy criticized the lax enforcement of constitutional structures, noting that powerful individuals often disregard established procedures.

Additionally, he praised investigative journalist Manasseh Azure Awuni for exposing the discrepancies in the contract, commending his efforts in combating corruption.

“…it sounds like he does more anti-corruption work than our anti-corruption agencies combined, which is interesting,” he added.

Similarly, Manasseh Azure Awuni asserted on JoyNews’ Newsfile programme that those implicated in the contract violations could face prosecution and emphasized the importance of holding accountable those who benefited unlawfully.

Both Dr. Kennedy and Manasseh Azure Awuni emphasized the need for swift and decisive action to address the misconduct and recover misappropriated funds, highlighting the potential for legal repercussions for individuals involved in the GRA-SML deal.

SML/GRA deal has many candidates for jail – Manasseh Azure

Manasseh Azure Awuni has asserted that the contract is riddled with numerous violations that could lead to prosecution.

He believes that those responsible for the wrongdoing could be jailed since it would be possible for any government to take legal action and recover the funds.

Speaking on JoyNews’ Newsfile programme on Saturday, May 25, Mr Azure emphasized that substantial amount of state fund has been inappropriately paid to individuals who did not deserve it.

He called for accountability and urged the government to take decisive action against those involved in the contract.

“This is a case that has a number of candidates for jail if any government wants to take this up, it is going to be very easy to put people in jail, and it is going to be very easy for us to retrieve hundreds if not billions of cedis paid to people who did not deserve a pesewa,” he stated.

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