Details are emerging that a large number of party bigwigs who followed the twice defeated presidential candidate of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Nana Akufo-Addo, during the 2012 elections did so because of their parochial and personal gains, and not for the larger interest of the party and the candidate.
Barely two years after the party tasted it second straight defeat in two national elections, names have began dropping in, in terms of who squandered campaign cash and what they used the cash entrusted into their custody for.
Already, NPP National Chairman, Jake Obetsebi-Lamptey, and some executives of the party have publicly been accused by Kennedy Ohene Agyepong and Dr. Nyaho Nyaho-Tamakloe for chopping party cash and hoarding some party resources which should have been released to prosecute the 2012 election.
Information gathered by this paper have revealed that aside the national executives; names of key stalwarts, like the nephew of the flagbearer, Gabby Asare-Otchere-Darko, NPP Director of Elections, Martin Adjei Mensah Korsah and ex-National Organizer, Lord Commey, are making the rounds in the party as having hived billions of Ghana Cedis belonging to the party for their private use.
Also in circulation, are pictures of expensive mansions and impressive hotels these individuals supposedly built from proceeds of the campaign cash entrusted to them.
Mr. Otchere Darko, journalist cum lawyer, is said to have built a plush 6-bedroom mansion at Accra’s finest residential area East Legon, where the rich and famous live.
Questions are being asked as to how the publisher of the pro-NPP newspaper, The New Statesman was able to raise funds to erect the six-bedroom house with rooftop where he relaxes with his wife and kids, especially when he is not a successfully lawyer.
A picture of the mansion seen by The Herald has a heavy black gate and painted brownish.
Insiders said, Gabby cannot be likened to successful lawyers like Kwame Akufo, Nana Asanti Bediatuo, Philip Addison and many of his peers, and so are questioning his sources of funds. They also argue that his works with the Bureau of National Investigations (BNI) as a lawyer also does not have the capacity to build such a house.
Gabby is currently in the UK serving Nana Addo as his errand boy. He resigned his executive directorship of Danquah Institute (DI), a pro-NPP think tank to follow Nana Addo.
He served Nana Addo during the 2008 election and was even named in Dr. Arthur Kennedy’s book chasing the Elephant into bush” as the disburser of campaign cash in huge foreign currency.
Next on the list is the current Director of Election, Martin Adjei Mensah Korsah, said to have built his mansion at a place, called Tse Addo near Trade Fair in Accra.
The young politician, who has had a clean sheet in terms of controversy since he assumed office in the largest opposition party, is said to be putting up the building; a one-storey four bedroom house without anyone knowing his sources of funding.
Indeed, insiders said they have no idea what other activity Martin Adjei Mensah Korsah does for a living apart from work.
His beautiful house has a brown roof and is already painted cream.
Another party man named, is the legendary ex-National Organizers of the party is Lord Commey. He is said to be putting up a massive 40-bedroom hotel facility at Kasoa in the Central Region. Key party sources are not aware of what he does for a living.
Some say he has a drinking spot in Dansoman, but also wondered whether he could raise money from that business to build the hotel which is yet to be painted, but has a green roof.
Meanwhile, Mr. Jake Obestebi-Lamptey, has had his stewardship questioned by the leadership of the party at a meeting.
According to the details emanating from meetings held at the national headquarters of the party under strict confidentiality, Mr. Obetsebi-Lamptey for the past four years has been operating a secret bank account where all funds generated out of the premium text messages, as well as the filling fees of both the presidential aspirants and parliamentary aspirants are kept without the knowledge and approval of his subordinates.
The Herald has learnt that hitherto, party funds were left in the custody of Constituency chairmen at that level for running party’s activities, but upon the assumption of office as the National chairman, Mr. Lamptey issued a caveat that all such party funds be directed into a bank account, instead of the existing Ghana Commercial Bank (GCB) account of the party.
The Herald learnt that as a result of this, the funds that were accrued from the two hundred and seventy Constituency in the primaries had been kept under instruction of the Chairman, thereby, rendering the Constituency chairmen redundant because the funds they were expected to work with for the election of Nana Addo were not available.
Sources at the steering meeting said, there was a confrontation between the immediate ex-party chairman, Peter Mac Manu, who openly objected the way and manner Mr. Obestebi-Lamptey, an ex-Chief of Staff, Minister for Tourism in the erstwhile Kuforur’s era, handled the party’s finances in the run-up to the December 7, elections.
Tempers flared at the meeting with Mr. Mac Manu saying, there has never been any occasion in the history of this party that Constituency chairpersons have to go singing praises to the party national Chairman before party funds were released for their activities.
The leadership has directed that Mr. Obestebi-Lamptey to return the funds in his private bank account to the official bank account of the party.
Dr. Nyaho-Tamakloe, recently revealed that Mr. Obestebi-Lamptey ,was under investigation for financial malfeasance, and questioned why the vetting committee of the party could allow him to contest the upcoming National Executive election at Tamale in April, with such a record.
A founding member of the party, Dr. Nyaho-Tamakloe, has since been pouched from all corners of the party including, ex-General; Secretary Dan Botwe, asking for his resignation from the NPP.