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Sunday, September 27, 2009

I'll Be Surprised If Implicated Ministers Are Not Sacked--Ben Ephson

Political analyst and Editor-in-Chief of the 'Daily Dispatch' newspaper, Ben Ephson, says taking into account the kind of campaign message then Candidate Mills, in the run-up to last year’s General Elections preached, it would really be a bolt from the blue if he fails to dismiss some ministers implicated in the Mabey & Johnson trial in the UK.

In an interview on PEACEFM during the Midday bulletin, Mr. Ephson, should it the report be confirmed as accurate, the implicated ministers should do the best thing by resigning.

“I will be very stunned if after the Attorney-General secures certified true copies of the case and it turns out to be factual that indeed they took bribes, if they (NDC Ministers) don’t jump, President Mills will kick them out…given that one of the cardinal campaign messages he rode on to victory in the 2008 General Elections was fighting corruption…if Prof does not ask them to step aside to clear their name, I’ll be very surprised,” he stated.

A landmark ruling in the UK on Friday, named several Ghanaian politicians as having once received bribes from a British construction firm Mabey & Johnson in the 1980s and the 1990s.

Kingpins of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) government including Dr Sipa Yankey, Mr. Kwame Peprah and Dr. Ato Quarshie were mentioned as having received bribes from the company.

Dr Ato Quarshie who is a former Works and Housing Minister is said to have taken a cheque for £55,000 in 1995, whilst Health Minister Dr Sipa Yankey reportedly received a total of £10,500, lawyers for Mabey & Johnson said in court.

Other persons including one Mohammed Seidu took £5,000; Edward Attipoe received £10,000; and Alhaji Sidique Boniface allegedly picked some £500 for school fees.

The company, Mabey and Johnson and its Directors, were convicted after pleading guilty to the offence on Friday, September 25, 2009.

Touching on the upcoming Chereponi by-election, Mr. Ephson, who is also a renowned Pollster posited that the margin of victory between the party that wins and places second “will be very close and not more than 2,000 votes.
Source: Kwadwo Asante/Peacefmonline

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