IMANI Africa to pursue case of Kelni GVG CMP deal
By Nana Appiah Acquaye, Accra, Ghana
Ghana’s leading think tank firm Imani Africa says it’s determined to pursue its campaign against the actions of various state agencies in the KelniGVG Common Monitoring Platform contract matter.
Even though Kelni GVG’s built and operate Common Monitoring Platform (CMP) has been officially launched in Accra by President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo Addo signaling government of Ghana’s approval and blessing of the deal, IMANI Africa still insists that the $178 million contract had been awarded in shady circumstances and would not back down on its principles of accountability and value for money.
“IMANI remains resolute in its pursuit of the public interest. Even where resources limit its preferred approach to public interest work, it continues to mobilize public opinion, and to look for alternative avenues for redress compatible with its limited means. IMANI never backs down on principles,” it said in a statement
According to the President of IMANI Africa, Franklin Cudjoe his outfit will continue to dialogue with other civil society groups about the best way forward in the value for money dispute; and also explore two options including seeking alliances to find the necessary resources to continue pressing the matter in Court and seeking redress in an alternative forum, most likely CHRAJ since the government cannot be brought to the table.
“In a very detailed investigative report, IMANI has shown how the entire tender was designed to undermine the procurement system through sham proceedings, whereby companies with zero track record, no full-time employees, no licenses in any of the various telecom categories, and no fixed address, were deliberately brought together to pretend to bid. None of the companies showed evidence of access to $18 million minimum in cash or credit (10% of bid price), even though this was a clear requirement in the NCA’s tender rules,” it revealed.
The think tank firm strongly is of the view that Ghana has already lost money due to the way the whole Kelni GVG deal was handled.
In May 2018, IMANI commenced a campaign aimed at compelling the Ministry of Communications (MOC), the National Communications Authority (NCA), and the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) to review its engagement of KelniGVG in a $178 million project on the grounds that the entire approach to revenue assurance in the telecom sector was wrong-headed, and that the contract had been awarded in shady circumstances.
IMANI showed that the whole project could be undertaken for less than 1% of the amount being quoted and that the intended approach is not substantively different from what the country has been doing for many years now; and yet communications taxes (CST) had dropped from $58 million in 2016 to $54 million in 2017 despite Ghana spending about $32 million a year on various measures designed to “protect revenue”.