Bono Regional Minister, Evelyn Kumi-Richardson
The office of the Bono Regional Minister, Evelyn Kumi-Richardson, has said the Minister does not have a “personal interest” in the sale of public bungalows and lands as being alleged by some persons.
The office has, therefore, called on the general public to disregard the allegations.
A statement issued on Wednesday, 30 September 2020, and signed by the spokesperson for the Bono Regional Minister, Mr Maxwell Mahama, said the office of the Regional Minister’s attention has been drawn to allegations of corruption against her “by persons like the Chief Executive Officer of Nimdee 95.1 FM, a radio station in Sunyani, on Monday, the 28th September 2020.”
It enumerated the series of allegations levelled against the minister including: “Excerpts from the 2018 Auditor-General report, land issues; the alleged sale of the old Sunyani slaughterhouse, the sale of other kinds to a private businessman, the sale of land opposite the Regional Police Headquarters in Sunyani etc” and “the alleged sale of government bungalows opposite Sunyani Prisons.”
According to the office of the Regional Minister, it “is mindful of the fact that every right-thinking person will, at least, respect the rule of natural justice. Thus, give fair hearing to the other person/party to respond to issues of allegations made against him or her. This was never done. Even where a person is charged with criminal offence, that person shall – ‘be presumed to be innocent until he is proved or has pleaded guilty'”.
The statement noted that the Bono Regional Minister is “a woman of substance and with high integrity.”
It continued that: “The creation of Audit is guaranteed under Article 187 of the 1992 Constitution of the Republic of Ghana to conduct audit into the public accounts of Ghana and of all other persons or authorities. What we think a right person should or may do is to study the processes and the procedures of the audit before coming out to denigrate the hard-won reputation of someone.
“Again, issues regarding the sale of the Sunyani old slaughterhouse at Bosoma Market will be an issue to be answered by the Sunyani Traditional Council. Nananom are the best judges to the above allegation that, Nananom never paid GHS300,000 to the Sunyani Municipal Assembly simply because in his assertion the alleged payment of the GHS300,000 was not by way of cheque but rather cash! Never shall we invite our respectable Nananom into frivolous and unmeritorious allegations. Every credible person will first and foremost reconcile his or her facts with Nananom to ascertain the correctness of the information before coming out to insult the intelligence of Nananom.”
The office of the Regional Minister further noted that: “It is clear without any form of ambiguity in Article 257 of the 1992 Constitution who owns public lands and other public property of Ghana. The same Constitution in Article 258 talks about the Commission responsible for the management of public lands and it is, therefore, not the responsibility of the Hon. Regional Minister to deal with the appropriation of state lands or otherwise. It will be out of malice for somebody to allege that the Regional Minister has sold public lands and bungalows without finding out from the Lands Commission and the Ministry of Works and Housing.”
It emphasised that the “Regional Minister has no personal interest in the sale of public lands and bungalows as stated earlier, she is a woman of high integrity.”
“The Hon. Regional Minister is blameless, resolute, firm, bold, courageous and steadfast in making sure His Excellency Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo and New Patriotic Party succeed.”
It added: “It is absolutely not necessary to give attention to unsubstantiated and baseless allegations and accusations.”