Blows Ghana Maritime Authority’s GHC145, 000 On Food Bought At His Private Hotel
Two documents, have found their way into the public space, exposing the Director-General of the Ghana Maritime Authority (GMA) Kwame Owusu for outrageously spending a whopping GHC135, 125. 00 on food on a single night.
Mr Owusu, who spent another GHc10, 652 covering food for eight officials of the Authority, is involved in a case of conflict of interest, because the hotel that supplied the said food, belongs to the D-G, who is said to be a very close pal of President Akufo-Addo.
The name of the hotel receiving the amount totaling GHC145, 777.05 from the GMA, was captured in two separate memos to the D-G dated November 8 and December 28, 2017, as Luxe Suites hotel.
The Herald’s independent checks reveal that Luxe Suites Hotel, is at Cantonments off the Switchback Road in Accra.
On the official website of the GMA, Mr Owusu, had written among his achievements that “as the Group Chairman of LUXE Hotels, he oversaw the expansion of the hospitality group from one location to six others in Ghana”.
Additional reports are that the GMA boss, owns the Obama Hotels in parts of Accra and some video houses, where people pay to go have sex under the pretext of watching movies.
The documents obviously leaked from the GMA, have sparked outraged, especially among social media users and most of them are questioning what has happened to the President’s campaign against corruption and pledge to “protect the public purse” in the wake of the numerous corruption allegations?
One of the two memos, sighted by The Herald written by Rhoda Atiah, Director of Administration, to the Director-General himself was titled “Payment for Food, drinks and music for end-of-year dinner party”dated December 28, 2017.
It read “Sir, I write to request for a release of an amount of One Hundred and Thirty Five Thousand, One Hundred and Twenty Five Ghana Cedis (135, 125. 00) to pay Luxe Suites Hotel for the cost of food, drinks and music provided for stuff and protocols during the end of year dinner party on Friday, 22nd December, 2017”
The second memo with the subject, “Payment for food supplied during meetings at head office”also signed by the Director of Administration read,“Sir, I humbly write to seek your authorization for a release of an amount of Ten thousand six hundred and fifty-two Ghana Cedis, five pesewas (GHC 10, 652. 05).”
It said the amount was “to pay Luxe Suites Hotel for the cost of food supplied to the Authority during the Management meetings and stakeholders meetings on Maritime Security fees and charges at the Head Office”.
From the memo, The Herald, gathered that while the management and stakeholders’ meetings were held at the Head Office of the Authority, and only food provided amounting GHC 10, 652. 05, the other memo did not indicate where the end-of year dinner party was held.
The memos which were splashed on social media by musician-turned politician, Kwame Asare Obeng popularly known as Kwame A Plus, have left many in shock, wondering what food was served at the said meetings and dinner party.
He said “Charley me I still don’t understand how 8 people spent 10,652,00 on food during a meeting. Ah how? It means each person’s food (just one meal) cost 1,335.00 Ghana cedis. Really? If you own Ghana as your private company will you spend this amount on a meal for just one meeting?
If we complained during the campaign that NDC spent 20 dollars on Kenkey in Brazil, how then can we support this? 20 dollars is just 100 Ghana. This is 1.335.00 per person per meal. Did they chew golden sausages or the elephant itself came to the meeting?”
While, a few say the invoice should have been provided to see the actual details from the hotel, others say the price tag for the eight stuff of the Authority costing GHC 10, 652. 05 were inconceivable.
This comes in the wake of several corruption allegations against a government which won political power on the back of corruption allegations against it predecessor.
The GMA is under the ministry of Transport, with Kweku Ofori Asiama, as the sector minister.
Below is the GMA boss’ profile captured on the official website of the GMA
“Mr Kwame Owusu, who has earned a reputation as an accomplished management expert with over 30 years of public and private sector experience in finance and accounting, was appointed by President Nana Akufo-Addo as the Director General of Ghana Maritime Authority.
He held various Senior Management level positions, including the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Ghana Supply Company and Special Advisor to the Ministry of Energy in Ghana. Whilst at the Ministry, he also served as the Director of Financial Monitoring of the Energy Sector Institutions.
As an active advocate of strategic thinking, he used public policies to develop effective financial controls for budget, tax and accounting delivery performance. He facilitated various training workshops in sound financial management practices for public sector audiences.
He also worked extensively with three out of the six largest international accounting/tax firms in the world (KPMG, Deloitte & Touche and Pricewaterhouse Coopers), leading assignments in tax advisory services, corporate mergers and acquisitions, transaction advisory services, financial and forensic audits, budget planning and corporate restructurings. engineering.
During his time with the Ministry of Energy, he oversaw the energy crisis and resolved critical issues facing the Government of Ghana. An accomplished businessman and entrepreneur, Mr Owusu has developed and built varied businesses from Start-up to maturity. As the Group Chairman of LUXE Hotels, he oversaw the expansion of the hospitality group from one location to six others in Ghana.
Mr Kwame Owusu hails from Asotwe, in the Ashanti Region. He was educated at Rutgers University, where he obtained a BA degree in Accounting & Economics with Honours and became a Chartered Accountant and was awarded the Phi Beta Kappa and Beta Gamma Sigma Honours.