NDC govt to investigate demolition of Bulgarian Embassy 

The National Democratic Congress (NDC) caucus in Parliament has said that a future NDC government would investigate and prosecute all persons connected to the demolition of the Bulgarian Embassy in Ghana. 
According to the caucus, government’s statement on findings of the Sole Inquirer into the demolition only sets the tone to shield persons in officialdom whose actions have brought embarrassment to Ghana. 

“We wish to serve strong and unambiguous notice that these cover-ups and pathetic whitewash will not prevent a future NDC government from launching a full-scale, no-holds-back probe and a strict regime of punishing all complicit officials in the entire value chain within a more credible, patriotic and internationally acceptable best practice effort to restore Ghana’s once enviable reputation within the diplomatic community,” a statement signed by the Ranking Member on Foreign Affairs Committee, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, said.

The NDC caucus’ hint comes on the back of assurances by the Minister of Lands and Natural Resources, Samuel Abu Jinapor, that Government would “act transparently, in good faith, and with the utmost integrity in this matter,” and “all other matters relating to landed properties in which diplomatic missions have interests.” 

The Bulgarian Embassy was reportedly demolished by a private developer in March, this year, prompting the appointment of a retired High Court Judge, Justice Kwasi Anto Ofori-Atta, by Mr Jinapor, to probe the circumstances leading to the demolition. 

The Sole Inquirer recommended that a private citizen, Jojo Hagan, the executor of the will of the original owner of the land, be sanctioned for not following due process in the eviction of the occupants of the property, thus the Bulgaria mission before assigning same to Dr Yaw Adu-Ampomah, a member of the National Development Planning Commission (NDPC).

In line with this recommendation, Mr Jinapor in a statement said he has written to the Attorney-General for advice in respect of the recommendation to sanction Mr Hagan. 

But, the Minority said “government intends to use Mr Hagan as a scape goat to leave (sic) high ranking officials at the Lands Commission and Dr Adu-Ampomah, President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo’s nominee on the NDPC off the hook. “

The NDC asked “Why is government not identifying complicit officials at the Lands Commission for sanction when in government’s own [statement] the registration of the assignment of Dr Yaw Adu-Ampomah is found, as indicated in the Sole Inquirer’s report to have been improperly obtained?

The caucus questioned why the Sole Inquirer did not invite the Bulgarian The Ambassador, Mr Yanko Yordanov, despite his spirited effort to be heard, but it was only his subordinate, the Honorary Consul, who was heard.

The Minority said it was unthinkable for “the Minister to now seek advice from the Attorney-General on how sanctions should apply against the “apparent scape goat”, Jojo Hagan.

On the recommendation that Mr Hagan compensated the Bulgarians, the Minority asked what would be the nature and value of the compensation, whether or not Mr Hagan has the financial might to meet same and why there was no specific time frame for redeeming the said compensation. 
BY JULIUS YAO PETETSI


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