The management of Zoomlion Ghana Limited, has vehemently rejected claims it was contracted by the Volta River Authority (VRA) to conduct fumigation activities in areas affected by the recently controlled Akosombo Dam spillage.
Manasseh Azure Awuni, had claimed in an article that Zoomlion, had been contracted to fumigate the lower Volta areas, however, in a statement, the management of Zoomlion, described the claim as misleading and unfounded.
“Management categorically refutes this misleading, false and unfounded assertion by one Manasseh Azure Awuni, who has for the past 10 years sought to level various allegations against Zoomlion to no avail. This recent publication is a demonstration of Manasseh’s clear disregard for journalistic integrity and professional ethics as is expected of a person of his calibre.”
“We want to emphasize that Zoomlion has not been contracted by VRA to undertake any fumigation activities in the said affected areas, as claimed by Mr. Awuni. His allegations are baseless and lack any factual basis. It is disheartening that in his pursuit of sensationalism and cheap popularity, Mr. Awuni, has chosen to misrepresent the facts,” Zoomlion said in its statement.
Zoomlion challenged Mr Awuni to provide evidence to support his claims, and reassured the public of its commitment to supporting the communities in the Volta Region.
“Management wishes to challenge Mr Awuni to provide evidence to substantiate his claims and allegations regarding the alleged contract awarded to our company. We remain unwavering in our commitment to upholding our corporate social responsibility and providing steadfast support to the communities in the Volta Region and in other way to our mother Ghana, despite the unwarranted distractions caused by such baseless accusations.”
On October 30, the Volta River Authority, initiated a significant disinfection and fumigation exercise in communities affected by the controlled spill of the Akosombo Dam.
The disinfection exercise began in Mepe in the North Tongu District of the Volta Region, given its high concentration of affected people.
In his article entitled “Ibrahim Mahama, Zoomlion and Serious Questions for the VRA”, Manasseh Azure Awuni wrote “I have followed with admiration the humanitarian gesture extended to the victims of the Volta Dam spillage by Ibrahim Mahama, a brother of the NDC’s flag bearer and former president, John Dramani Mahama.
“When I read about the truckloads of relief items he sent to the Volta Region, I wondered why an individual appeared to be doing more than the government, especially when the spillage of the dam that caused the flooding and flattening of towns and farmlands was carried out by the state.
“When I woke up this morning, I again read that Ibrahim Mahama’s company, Engineers and Planners, has volunteered to dredge the affected areas to redirect the flow of water and help maintain some broken roads. The machines are already on the ground, working.
“This is an expensive venture that involves machines and human resources and fuel among others. And I commend Ibrahim Mahama highly for this gesture.
“When I read that news, I remembered how Ibrahim Mahama was vilified for volunteering to dredge the Odaw basin for free. Later, that same work was given to Zoomlion’s sister company called Dredge Masters. That company is paid hundreds of millions of cedis and nothing changes despite the company’s promise to President Akufo-Addo in 2019 that in a couple of years, the company would turn the place into a recreational ground with hotels and restaurants along its banks.
“When that came to mind, it again occurred to me that Zoomlion and our government officials would cook up another shady deal and profit from the disaster caused by the Volta River Authority’s spillage of the dam.
“I was right.
“The VRA has contracted Zoomlion to undertake fumigation of the areas affected by the disaster. I don’t know the level of intelligence or foolishness that went into the VRA’s decision, but I have enough evidence to prove that fumigation has become an avenue through which government officials connive with Zoomlion to loot state resources. (Check the comment section of this post for comprehensive evidence of this blatant fraud against the people of Ghana).
“The latest international investigative journalism award I won was for my investigation into how President Akufo-Addo spearheaded one of the biggest frauds against Ghana using COVID-19 as an excuse. No government official has been able to give a scientific reason to back the fumigation of schools that had been closed down for months or the market and street spraying, which the WHO had extensively proven not to be effective in combatting COVID-19.
“The worst part of the scandal is that ALL THE ASSEMBLIES IN GHANA have standing contracts with Zoomlion to undertake fumigations. These contracts have been running continuously since 2010. Zoomlion is paid directly from the District Assemblies Common Fund, whether the fumigation is carried out or not.
“Zoomlion again signed another such fumigation contract with the Ministry of Health in 2009 to undertake fumigation in the assemblies. Zoomlion was paid directly by the National Health Insurance Authority. This is the contract that Daniel Domelevo’s era as Auditor General flagged as fraudulent.
“Various reports of the Auditor General have flagged the existing shady fumigation contracts, that the money is paid but work is not done. Parliament’s Public Accounts Committee recently recommended a cancellation of these contracts.
“Every year, the government, through the Ministry of Local Government or other institutions, awards separate fumigation contracts to Zoomlion.
“During the COVID-19 pandemic, assemblies that had their own capacity to fumigate were asked to stop so that Zoomlion would do it for them at an additional cost to what was already being deducted from their Common Fund.
“These are acts of fraud that have had the blessing of government officials, including President Akufo-Addo. I don’t believe they are too stupid to know what is right. That makes me wonder why they use every misfortune to loot from the people instead of addressing their misery?
“As citizens, we should be asking the VRA CEO and management, how much they are paying Zoomlion to do this. We should ask them why they have awarded another contract while Zoomlion already has contracts in these areas to do fumigation?
“The CEO of VRA and the management should give us the report of their needs assessment and explain why fumigation became their top priority when the victims of the spillage are crying for food and blankets and basic items.
“They should explain why they have awarded a new contract to Zoomlion when places like Mepe are already covered by existing contracts with Zoomlion to do fumigation?
“They should give us a breakdown of how much they are spending to help the victims and what percentage of that is channeled into this shady fumigation deal.
“In my book titled The Fourth John: Reign, Rejection and Rebound, I stated that whenever Zoomlion is involved, government officials act without consulting their brains.
“The CEO and directors and engineers of the VRA are supposed to be among some of the finest brains we have in Ghana, and we should be interested in what informed this fumigation deal, especially when the activity and the company used are not aliens to the main problem plaguing our nation–grand corruption.
“PLEASE: Help share this on all your social media platforms, including WhatsApp. Share with any VRA worker you know. Share and let’s demand answers.
Zoomlion, in its statement dated October 30, 2023, said “the attention of the Management of Zoomlion Ghana Limited has been drawn to a report on social media dubbed “Ibrahim Mahama, Zoomlion, and Serious Questions for VRA,”, which story seeks to suggest that Zoomlion Ghana Limited has been contracted by the Volta River Authority (VRA) to undertake fumigation of the lower Volta areas affected by the recent controlled spillage from the Akosombo Dam.
“Management categorically refutes this misleading, false and unfounded assertions by one Manasseh Azure Awuni, who has for the past 10 years sought to level various allegations against Zoomlion to no avail.
“This recent publication is a demonstration of Manasseh’s clear disregard for journalistic integrity and professional ethics as is expected of a person of his caliber. We want to emphasize that Zoomlion has not been contracted by VRA to undertake any fumigation activities in the said affected areas, as claimed by Mr. Awuni.
“His allegations are baseless and lack any factual basis. It is disheartening that in his pursuit of sensationalism and cheap popularity, Mr. Awuni, has chosen to misrepresent the facts.
“On Monday 23rd October 2023, Zoomlion Ghana Limited led by its Executives and Management presented a number of relief items worth over 500,000 cedis to the victims of the spillage.
“Additionally, a sister company, Ecozoil also donated almost 500 life jackets to the media and rescue team supporting the situation on the ground. At the same presentation event, the company in addition to the items presented announced its intention to also fumigate the areas once the water had receded.
“It is therefore regrettable that Mr Awuni has chosen to overlook these notable humanitarian efforts undertaken by Zoomlion and its sister companies in support of the flood victims.
“A gesture which was widely covered by various media outlets, yet Mr. Awuni chose to disregard these facts and propagate misleading information, and peddle his usual falsehood against the one company that has been at the forefront of keeping Ghana clean, green and healthy, and this is deeply concerning.
“Management wishes to challenge Mr Awuni to provide evidence to substantiate his claims and allegations regarding the alleged contract awarded to our company.
“We remain unwavering in our commitment to upholding our corporate social responsibility and providing steadfast support to the communities in the Volta Region and in other way to our mother Ghana, despite the unwarranted distractions caused by such baseless accusations.
“We want to reassure all stakeholders that our dedication to serving and uplifting communities remains resolute, and we will continue to prioritize the well-being and support of those in need, irrespective of such false allegations. Communication Directorate