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GIPC caught in Gh¢133k procurement breach

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The Ghana Investment Promotion Centre (GIPC) in 2012 dished out advertisement contracts to foreign companies without recourse to the country’s Public Procurement Act (act 663), investigations have revealed.

The companies are Globus Vision Limited, GH¢56,528.74, Prisma Group Limited, GH¢17, 159. 84 (Part payment) and Quality Communication Production Limited GH¢59,400.00 totaling Gh¢133,088.58.

“…All the advertisement contracts signed with foreign companies were not through competitive bidding and were approved single-handedly by the Chief Executive Officer,” said the investigations contained in the 2015 Auditor General’s report.

The investigations further noted that payments to the aforementioned companies were not subjected to withholding tax, resulting in loss of revenue.

Covering the GIPC’s audited accounts for the year ended 31 December, 2012, the report continued that the outstanding balance owed one of the companies—Prisma Group limited was not provided in the accounts. “This has understated both the total advertisement expenditure and liabilities,” said the report.

“We therefore recommended that such contracts should be carried out only in accordance with the law. The Executive Officer has been advised to desist from awarding contracts which are above the stipulated threshold,” the report being scrutinized by the Public Accounts Committee of Parliament (PAC) instructed.

“We also recommended that henceforth, taxes should be withheld on payments made to these companies,” it added.

The management of the GIPC then had agreed to comply with all the relevant statutes then, according to the report.

In another development, the report uncovered that contrary to act 651 of Ghana Labour Law of 2003 and in spite of the Auditor General’s 2010 and 2011 reports, the Centre converted leave days of some staff into a total cash of GH¢46,283.56 and without the deduction of taxes.

Name Year Amount (GH¢) George Aboagye (CEO) 2011 27,864.98 Edward B.A. Lartey 2011 7,105.24 Vivian Agyepong 2011 4,687.68 Doris Anyan 2011 2,373.03 Kazia Darko 2011 1,790.88 Tetteh Ani 2011 1,080.25 Charles Kwarteng 2011 1,381.50 Total 46,283.56

The payment of the amount in liue of annual leave days was a complete disregard of the labour law and “favoritism of some selected staff.”

The report therefore recommended that management of the Centre strictly adheres to the labour laws and also to enforce compliance of leave register.

It further disclosed that the GIPC had barter transactions with some organisations for sponsoring the Ghana Club 100 programme and these transactions were without any “formally agreed and signed arrangements of contract.”

Normal primary documentations such as invoices were also not available, the report further divulged, adding the Centre could not monitor adverts in both newspapers and live coverage that was carried by Radio Gold.

“The above has the risk of income generated from sponsorship being misstated,” warned the report.

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