‘I raised concerns over Airbus deal then but was thrown away’ – Osei Kyei Mensah

‘I raised concerns over Airbus deal then but was thrown away’ – Osei Kyei Mensah

Majority Leader of Parliament Osei Kyei Mensah Bonsu has revealed that, his government at 2011 opposed against the purchase of  two Airbus C-295 aircrafts for the Ghana Army which has become topical issue at the moment.

According to him, at the time he was the minority leader, he vehemently challenged the deal but their voice got lost along the way.

Airbus, the European aircraft manufacturer, is alleged to have paid bribes in Ghana when it sold the three military aircraft.

The aerospace multinational admitted hiring the brother of a top elected Ghanaian official as its consultant for the pitch to sell the aircraft to the country.

Also, Airbus confessed paying the said consultant through a third party when its Compliance Unit raised red flags about the close relationship between the consultant and the top elected official, who was a key decision maker in the purchase of the military aircraft.

However responding to this in an interview with Umaru Sanda Amadu on Eyewitness News on Citi FM, he detailed reason behind the purchase then.

”At then, we realised the cost has been inflated. We did well to raise the issues on the floor of parliament and the Ministry of Defence then headed by General Smith wasn’t forthcoming with the information so we wrote to Airbus. Their response at the time was our request should rather come from James Klutse Avedzi, who was the Chairman of the Finance Committee.

”He wasn’t willing to do that, because of that we got stake. Even though we were related with the actual cost on the net which they did not disclaim. Those were some of the issues we raised but we didn’t get the satisfactory answers. If you check the process they went through with the purchase and agreement of the Airbus deal then, it was awful.

”Our voices at the time got lost along the way because we were the Minority. Government was and went all out to procure the deal finally. The finance committee then was the main people handling the deal. The contract was more accessed by the Ministry of Defense.” he said.

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