The Herald’s following of the probe by the Economic and Organised Crime Office (EOCO) and subsequent seizure of the passport of businessman Ibrahim Mahama, has revealed some interesting facts, chief among is a case of political harassment.
The EOCO investigation is at the instance of Kennedy Agyapong, the Member of Parliament (MP) for Assin Central in the Central region, who had been verbally lashing Ibrahim Mahama and threatening him with arrest, criminal prosecution and imprisonment, since the period of the John Mahama administration.
The MP for Assin Central, Kennedy Agyepong, alleged on Oman FM in March this year that, Ibrahim Mahama defrauded the state to the tune of GH¢14 million, and pledged to commit suicide if the Akufo-Addo government, did not incarcerate Mr. Mahama.
Ibrahim Mahama, according to The Herald’s insiders, is said to have cooperated with EOCO by explaining his company’s arrangements with the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA).
He is said to have at an instance, asked EOCO officials to take him to court, if they believe there’s sufficient evidence to establish a case against him. But this government is said to be shopping around for allegations against Ibrahim Mahama.
The facts are that, Ibrahim’s company, Engineers and Planners (E$P) imported equipment to execute the Tamale – Salaga road project for government, the project is worth GH¢300 million.
Secondly, E&P, had agreed with Ghana Revenue Authority to spread GH¢16 million duties and taxes imposed on the equipment over a 12month period from contract certificates paid by the Ministry of Finance.
Thirdly, E&P, are to pay the deferred taxes with interest. This is a facility GRA extends to many Ghanaian enterprises. The arrangement worked perfectly and bankers drafts are paid to GRA in exchange for post dated cheques deposited by Engineers and Planners.
With the new NPP administration, payments on government projects, were suspended until the presentation of the budget.
As a result of the suspension, E&P Certificates of almost GH¢20 million remain unpaid.
Engineers and Planners therefore owes GRA GH¢11 million.
Based on the arrangement with GRA, Ibrahim’s company E&P, has eight months according to the agreement to complete payment.
By the GRA’s payment schedule with Engineers and Planners, the amount outstanding according to the agreement by April ending is GH¢2 million.
Government of Ghana is said to be indebted to Engineers and Planners. This is a matter for the Ghana Revenue Authority.
What the EOCO should be interested in, is who forced the officials of GRA to present the bankers draft even when there was a prior notice that government is yet to pay his company. The drafts were deliberately presented to create the issue of false cheques.
Meanwhile, a founding member of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Dr. Nyaho Nyaho-Tamakloe, has accused the government of witch hunting Ibrahim Mahama after EOCO invited the latter for questioning on Tuesday.
Mr. Mahama, who is a brother to former president John Mahama was invited by EOCO for questioning over some claims that he had issued cheques to clear some heavy duty equipment he imported into the country.
Dr. Nyaho Tamakloe believes his invitation was connected to the threat by the maverick NPP MP.
Speaking Wednesday in an interview with Starr News’ Ibrahim Alhassan, Dr. Nyaho Tamakloe declared that Mr. Mahama who happens to be his nephew is no fraudster and the claim that he got richer during the administration of former President Mahama was inexplicable.
According to him, all businessmen do issue post-dated cheque and that was what Mr. Mahma did, adding that there was nothing wrong with it.
Mr. Mahama, he added is not perturbed by the harassments from the EOCO noting that “Ibrahim [Mahama] will never fail.”
“He will never ever fail,” he emphasized.