Gen. Mosquito Interested In NPP Minority Probe Into Merchant Bank-Fortis Deal

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The General Secretary of the governing National Democratic Congress (NDC), Johnson Asiedu-Nketia, has ordered the main opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP), to produce evidence of misconduct on the part of anybody on the sale of Merchant Bank to Fortis Equity Fund or shut-up.

“The NPP should shut-up, because they are alleging things that are not reasonable for the ordinary Ghanaian to accept”, he said.

Meanwhile, Mr. Asiedu-Nketia, has also announced his readiness to appear before the NPP Minority in Parliament to give evidence on what he personally knows about the Merchant Bank-Fortis transaction.

Speaking on an Accra-based, Montie FM, Mr. Asiedu-Nketia, believed his testimony would clear all doubts in the minds of the Minority.
He is, therefore, waiting for the Minority Leader, Osei-Kyei Mensah Bonsu, to outdoor his Committee to collect evidence on the deal, as he is ever ready to appear.

The NDC scribe, popularly known as General Mosquito, has also described as interesting, the calls by the Christian Council of Ghana, Trades Union Congress (TUC) and other liked organizations for President John Mahama to intervene in the sale of the bank, which has long been concluded by the parties involved.

Mr. Asiedu-Nketia, said this when he granted an in-studio interview with the Accra based station, Radio Gold yesterday, on his quest to find answers from the NPP on their difficulties with the sale of the bank, which Social Security and National Insurance Trust (SSNIT) used to own 90 per cent shares in, and the rest of the 10 percent own by State Insurance Company (SIC).

Merchant Bank, before the end of last year, was sold to a fairly new Ghanaian company, Fortis Equity Fund, because the bank was going through some stressful financial situation, due to the failure of debtors, including brother of President Mahama, Ibrahim Mahama, whose company Engineers and Planners (E&P), to service their loans.

According to Mr. Asiedu-Nketia, the attempt by the NPP to drag President Mahama into the debt owed Mercahnt bank by his brother is misplaced, especially so, when the current President was just a mere MP, whose party was in opposition.

Mr. Asiedu-Nketia said, there was no record showing that Mr. Mahama, played any role that compromised his position as a vice-president in the Mills administration adding, Mr. Mahama, was only invited to sit in that meeting with the then President, John Evans Atta Mills, on the potential collapse of the bank, due to the un-serviced loans.

Mr. Aseidu-Nketia, bemoaned the calculated attempts by the NPP to smear President Mahama with misconduct saying, if anything at all, the NPP must be explaining to Ghanaians how Ibrahim, acquired the loan when his late mother, Madam Joyce Tamakloe’s association with the then President John Agyekum Kufuor, her brother, Dr. Nyaho Nyaho Tamakloe, and former Chief of Staff and Minister of Presidential Affairs, Kwadwo Okyere Mpianim, spoke volume.

He challenged the NPP leadership in Parliament to furnish Ghanaians with such minutes or documents showing that indeed, President Mahama intervened as claimed by them.

According to him, despite the many nagging questions hanging around the neck of the NPP, he is convinced that the loan granted E& P was acquired genuinely, however, if the NPP still doubts it authenticity, then they should come out with credible evidence proving otherwise.

“I have not seen a better deal than this [otherwise if there was any] we will have jumped on it. Of all those that were offered, this was the best”, he disclosed.

Asked as to how a social democratic party, would be entertaining the sale of state asset when in the past, it had vehemently opposed the sale of Ghana Telecom to Vodafone, Mr. Asiedu-Nketia explained that even though the NDC was committed to the welfare of the state and its people, “there was nothing in social democracy that says that maintain loss-making companies”.

On the call on President Mahama to intervene on the sale of the bank, Mr. Asiedu-Nketia tasked those drumming home that notion to come clear on how the president should go about it, especially so when in the same transaction, the president is being accused of playing a similar role to benefit his younger brother.

He urged other interested parties, who are shouting the loudest particularly, TUC to question their representatives on the Board, who signed the agreement instead of blaming government or the NDC.

On claims that lawyer Tony Lithur is almost counsel for all the parties involved, Mr. Asiedu-Nketia, intimated that he is not aware the astute lawyer, has committed any crime, but directed that if indeed he has, then they should call on the General Legal Counsel, which is responsible for the conduct of lawyers.

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