Even as he is entangled in the smelly $2.25billion bond sale to his business partner’s company, Ghana’s Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta, has the luxury to play the doting ‘Father Christmas’ to people close to him.
And so his company, Enterprise Group, has gifted a whopping GHc8.4million in insurance cover to a fund that his sister-in-law, First Lady Rebecca Akufo-Addo, has established.
In a big-hearted donation that has raised eyebrows, Enterprise Group, also presented a cheque for GHc100,000 to Mrs. Akufo-Addo’s ‘Save a Child, Save a Mother’ foundation, which is supposed to be in the cause of reducing maternal and infant mortality.
While presenting the donations to Mrs. Akufo-Addo, Keli Gadzekpo, a well known, scandal-prone business partner of the Finance Minister, who co-owns Data Bank and Enterprise Group with Ofori-Atta, explained that the gift was to help the First Lady in her quest to construct a maternity unit at the Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital in Kumasi.
Further explanation is that the GHc8.4million insurance cover is for the construction of the maternity unit and that Enterprise Insurance, a subsidiary of Enterprise Group, would provide the cover.
Interestingly, Keli Gadzekpo so happens to be a member of the Board of Directors at Enterprise Group, which is chaired by the topical Trevor G. Trefgarne.
Hon. Trefgarne’s straddling position as the chair of the Enterprise Group and, concurrently, a director at Franklin Templeton, is what has landed Ken Ofori-Atta in the entanglement of conflict of interest after the Finance Minister secretly sold $2.25 billion worth of bonds to FT.
In this donation story, which entails the Finance Minister’s Enterprise Group blessing the wife of his cousin, President Akufo-Addo, with GHc100,000 free money and GHc8.4million in insurance cover, Trevor Trefgarne features strongly again.
This is because, as the chairman of the Board of Enterprise Group, it could only take an approval from him for the donation to be doled out. The interesting picture crystallizing is that Trevor Trefgarne, whose business connection with the Finance Minister informed the Finance Minister’s cook of a $2.25billion bond sale to Franklin Templeton in which Trevor is a director, gave approval for money to be donated to the company of the Finance Minister’s sister-in-law.
A strong suggestion of a mutual back-scratching has since come to hang in the air, as tongues wag and observers try to join the dots into suggestions that the $2.25billion dirty bond sale has been fruitful indeed!
In a 15-year bond that Ken Ofori-Atta had almost secretly sold in March, Trevor Trefgarne’s Franklin Templeton had bought a whopping 95% at a very lucrative coupon rate of 19.5%.
The consequence is that, FT stands to make some $400million in interest alone, every year for 15 years before collecting the $2.25billion principal. In all, FT will be making at least $6billion by the end of the 15 year maturity.
At an exchange rate of $1 is to GHc4, the Ghanaian taxpayer will be shelling out some GHc36billion in interest payments alone to FT over the 15 year period. And that even is if the exchange rate remains the same throughout the 15-year period.
The Minority National Democratic Congress has since petitioned the Securities and Exchanges Commission of the US to investigate the shady bond sale, which was issued on the 30th March 2017 and by 31st March the deal was closed.
As the Minority fights for full disclosure, the government is using every dirty trick in the book in attempt to water down the scandal, including setting up a secret meeting with the Council of State to pressure the Minority to abandon the quest for full disclosure.
It is as the drama over the bond is still playing out that the Enterprise Group, partly owned by the Finance Minister and chaired by Trevor G. Trefgarne, has donated a whopping Ghc8.4million insurance cover to a fund belonging to the First Lady, sister-in-law of the Finance Minister.
Source: therepublicnewsonline.com/ Fiifi Samuels