EOCO chases Awuah Darko over GHC40m BOST cash
The Economic and Organized Crime Office (EOCO) is on the heels of Kingsley Kwame Awuah-Darko, the immediate-past Managing Director (MD) of the Bulk Oil Storage and Transportation (BOST) Company Limited, over some alleged payments and withdrawals from the government’s account.
The account in question is the Chief of Staff’s ‘Sundry Account’ which the BOST boss regularly lodged money into and reportedly cashed by the Office of the Chief of Staff under President John Mahama.
Even though the amount involved has not yet been disclosed by EOCO, DAILY GUIDE learnt that it runs into several millions of Ghana cedis.
The ‘invitation’ extended to Mr Awuah Darko, who is current cooling off in the United States – where he has been for some months following the National Democratic Congress (NDC) humiliating defeat in last December’s general election – was issued on Tuesday when his name reportedly popped up concerning the withdrawals.
Contaminated Fuel Sale
The BOST has been in the news lately following the release of large quantities of contaminated fuel (dirty oil) to private companies for distribution by the current Managing Director, Alfred Obeng Boateng.
The BOST action sparked heated political debate when the minority NDC called for Mr. Obeng Boateng’s suspension, but the majority New Patriotic Party (NPP) hit back, exposing the BOST under Mahama’s NDC of being behind the contamination of fuel in the country when it was in power.
The majority revealed that there was evidence to show that about 12 million litres of the same contaminated fuel were sold to about 36 unlicensed entities and individuals in 2016 during the tenure of Mr. Awuah-Darko under the Mahama administration.
According to the majority, there is evidence to show how the Awuah-Darko-led management transferred over GH¢40 million to the presidency under John Mahama in a very bizarre manner.
It is unclear into which accounts the huge payments were made, but DAILY GUIDE understands about GH¢40,500,000 was allegedly transferred secretly from BOST account between August 2015 and early January this year.
The NPP claimed the Awuah-Darko administration led a corrupt administration, siphoning money to the Flagstaff House – the seat of government – for unexplained purposes.
The NPP said at a press conference that there were massive rotten deals under the former BOST MP, with the Office of then President John Mahama and his Chief of Staff, Julius Debrah, allegedly siphoning huge amounts of money between GH¢2.5 million and GH¢3.5 million at the end of every two weeks from 2015 under the guise of security transfers, amounting to about GH¢40.5 million.
According to documents from the majority, the particulars for the transactions indicated “transfer of funds accrued from security fees.”
Starting from August 28, 2015, BOST transferred GH¢3.5 million; released GH¢3 million on October 2, the same year and another GH¢3 million on November 12, 2015 while on December 23 the same year, GH¢20 million was transferred.
On February 05, March 15, April 15 and May 13 – all in 2016 – GH¢2.5 million on each occasion was transferred by BOST while on June 09, July 15 and August 24 in the same year, GH¢3 million each was transferred from BOST.
Later in September 29 and November 17, in 2016, GH¢3.5 million each was transferred by BOST while on January 03, 2017 – when it was left with just three days for the Mahama-led government to leave office – BOST transferred GH¢3 million.
BOST, during the tenure of Mr. Awuah-Darko, sold contaminated fuel to about 36 unlicensed entities and individuals and records showed that between March 05, 2015 and August 04, 2015, the previous BOST management sold 8,190,000 litres of contaminated fuel to 24 companies that were all unlicensed, as well as another 12,400.000 litres sold to other 25 unlicensed companies between January 16, 2016 and November 30, 2016.
DAILY GUIDE has learnt that the price per litre sold by BOST under the then NDC government was lower than what was sold to the private entities under the New Patriotic Party (NPP) government.
The Minister for Energy, Boakye Agyarko, has already cleared Alfred Obeng Boateng, BOST Managing Director, of any wrongdoing in the recent sale of some 5 million litres of contaminated fuel.
The minister said BOST never erred in transacting that business with energy firm, Movenpiina.
According to Mr Agyarko, investigations so far conducted by the Bureau of National Investigations (BNI), the National Security and the National Petroleum Authority (NPA) on the contaminated products had established that the fuel had not spilled onto the retail market for sale to vehicle owners.
Mr Agyarko told the media on Tuesday that “on the basis of previous practice, there was no wrongdoing at BOST on the sale of the 5 million liters of contaminated products.”