The Office of the Special Prosecutor (OSP) has charged Sumaila Abdul-Rahman, the CEO of the Northern Development Authority (NDA), and his two deputies – Stephen Yir-eru Engman and Patrick – Seidu for conspiracy to directly or indirectly influence the procurement process to obtain an unfair advantage in the award of a procurement contract.
The charged is based on the findings of the OSP from investigations into the activities of the Northern Development Authority and A&QS Consortium
The OSP has also charged the CEO of A&QS Consortium Limited, Andrew Kuundari, for conspiracy to directly or indirectly influence the procurement process to obtain an unfair advantage in the award of a procurement contract.
Sumaila Abdul-Rahman, Patrick Seidu and Andrew Kuundari have been charged with a further count each of directly or indirectly influencing the procurement process to obtain an unfair advantage in the award of a procurement contract, while Stephen Yir-eru Engman has been charged with a further two counts of the same offence.
The four persons will be arraigned before the High Court (Criminal Division), Tamale, on Tuesday January 31, 2023, a statement from Office of the Special Prosecutor said.
The OSP started formal investigation into the activities of the NDA upon a petition by Martin Luther Kpebu, a private legal practitioner.
By a written complaint dated June 15, 2022 and addressed to the Special Prosecutor, Kpebu requested investigation into the operations of NDA and the actions of its CEO and board chairman.
The complaint alleged that NDA awarded a contract to A&QS Consortium Limited (hereafter, A&QS) on January 28, 2020 for consultancy services for the supervision of some constituencies in the Upper West Region under the IPEP for the contract sum of GHC5.72 million.
However, upon the exit of the then acting chief executive who executed the contract, the contract sum was illegally increased to GHC10.4 million by the removal of the page containing the original figure of GHC5.7 million.
Additionally, there was a replacement at page 25, clause 33.1 of the contract with a fresh page containing the bloated figure GHC10.4 million to make it appear as if it is the contract executed by the previous acting chief executive.
The complaint also alleged that the Public Procurement Authority approved the award of the contract in the sum of GHC5.72 million on 16 January 2020 and that no approval was sought for the inflated figure of GHC10.4 million
The complaint further alleged that though the contract had expired, NDA went ahead to implement same, and paid about GHC3 million and that there was an attempt to pay an additional GHC5 million.
Petition to Chief of Staff
Prior to the filing of the complaint by Kpebu, the Chief of Staff at the Presidency had been petitioned on January 11, 2022 by a former acting chief executive of NDA, Dr Alhassan Sulemana Anamzoya. on the same matter.
In his petition titled “Falsification of A&QS Contract under the IPEP”, Dr Anamzoya stated that his attention had been drawn to a document purportedly signed by him awarding a contract in the sum of GHC10.4 million to A&QS by NDA under the IPEP.
Dr Anamzoya denied executing any such contract.