… Accusers claim he fronts for Russian Gas Coys
As President Nana Akufo-Addo leads the most nepotistic government ever in Ghana’s history, it has emerged that a prominent brother of his who is not in the regime’s supporting cast of family, friends, and ex-girlfriends is quietly plucking cake in the background.
Edward “Bumpty” Akufo-Addo has allegedly been fronting for international gas companies to land juicy government deals, peddling the influence of his brother, the President, in a potpourri of shadiness.
For his services, which have allegedly led to some existing government contracts changing hands, Bumpty, has been earning huge commissions, it is said.
In the case of a particularly grateful company which allegedly leveraged Bumpty’s connection in government to land a gas contract, the President’s brother is said to have been incorporated into the corporate structure of the company in show of appreciation.
Edward “Bumpty” Akufo-Addo is a close brother of the President’s, named after their father, former ceremonial President, Edward Akufo-Addo. This is the same Bumpty who in 2008 had helped manage $47million campaign cash that had been splurged by then Candidate Akufo-Addo on his first Presidential bid, which was not successful.
As a prominent Akufo-Addo blueblood, many have wondered why Bumpty has not been in the galaxy of family members who have been made appointees of the President. It turns out he has apparently been getting his due quietly away from camera lenses.
According to American blogger, Kevin Silverstein of Washingtonbabylon.com, Bumpty, has been fronting for international companies to land sweetheart oil and gas contracts from his brother’s government.
The recent 12-year contract between GoG and Russian giant, Gazprom, is cited as an example.
In the details of this deal, Bumpty is said to have pressured Energy Minister, BoakyeAgyarko, to award a piece of the cake, worth $2billion, to a Norwegian company called Blystad Energy Management.
That piece of the contract originally belonged to a company called Quantum Power Ghana, which had been contracted by the predecessor Mahama government. But Bumpty has, with the ascension of his brother to the Presidency, allegedly gotten the Energy Minister to replace Quantum Power with Blystad.
Blystad and TNLG
Blystad, it would be recalled, is one of the four companies in the TNLG Consortium that the NPP government had, in September, this year, given the contract to supply Liquefied Petroleum for the country’s power generation purposes.
TNLG, which is made up of Russian giant Gazprom, UK based Helios Investment Partners, South African Gasfin Development and Blystad Energy Management, was given the contract at the expense of Quantum Power Ghana, West African Gas Limited and Kaheel, which had been contracted by the Mahama government.
BoakyeAgyarko, the Energy Minister, had claimed, after awarding the contract that will see Gazprom supply liquefied natural gas to the Ghana National Petroleum Corporation for 12 years, starting in 2019, that he had saved Ghana $1billion with the new contract.
However, it is revealed that the Energy Minister’s decision to give the $2billion chunk of the deal to Blystad had not been approved by any of the technical agencies of the ministry.
Blystad, a small obscure energy firm that generates only $150million a year, got the LNG contract worth $2billion even though technocrats at the Energy Ministry had asked that the deal be given to the more experienced Quantum Power.
Kevin Silverstein reveals that Blystad got the contract at the expense of Quantum because Bumpty had fronted for it. In exchange for the fronting services, the President’s brother has been incorporated into the corporate structure of Blystad in addition to whatever cut that he got, it is alleged.
What is even more intriguing is that, according to Kevin Silverstein, Blystad is a partner of Gazprom, which has landed the LNG supply deal worth several billions of dollars.
The same Gazprom is said to have landed the deal in spite of the fact that it allegedly did not take part in the bid for the deal.
Kevin Silverstein touts documents that he has in his possession which show that Bumpty had put pressure on Energy Minister, BoakyeAgyarko, to take Quantum Power’s part of the deal and give it to Blystad.
In exchange for this, Blystad has allegedly not only paid Bumpty heavy commissions, but has also given him roles in their company.
Selfsame Bumpty, has, following from his successful move to get Quantum Power’s deal transferred to Blystad, now taken on a new challenge to help a Swiss company to land a juicy GoG contract.
According to Washingtonbabylon.com, the President’s brother is busily helping Litasco, a Switzerland based subsidiary of Russian giant, Lukoil, to get a deal that will enable Litascoto supply fuel oil to Ghana.
Here again, the goal is to yank an existing contract from a company that had been contracted by the predecessor Mahama government – Singaporean company, Trafigura PTE Limited – and give it to a company of Bumpty’s choosing, Litasco.
But, according to Kevin Silverstein, the deal that Bumpty is fronting is comparatively very bad with an existing one with Trafigura, which in itself is not good enough, thus making it the lesser of two evils.
In spite of the comparatively less advantageous nature of the Litasco deal that Bumpty is pushing, sources have confirmed that, like the Blystad deal, it will go through because Bumpty is the President’s brother.
Bumpty is said to have the ear of the Minister for Energy and Petroleum, BoakyeAgyarko, who, himself, is suspected to be in position to benefit from the deal if it goes through.
Mahama – Akufo-Addo rivalry
Meanwhile, Kevin Silverstein writes that apart from the financial rewards, a successful wrap of the deal will enable Bumpty to laugh at the expense of Ibrahim Mahama, younger brother of former President Mahama, who is allegedly a personal and business rival to Bumpty.
This is because, allegedly, Ibrahim Mahama has ties with Trafigura PTE – an abrogation of the Singaporean company’s deal with government and a subsequent transfer of that same deal to Bumpty’sLitasco will therefore teach Ibrahim where power lies.
Litasco and Lukoil
Interestingly, Litasco is an acronym for, LUKOIL International Trading and Supply Company. Lukoil, the Russian giant, is said to be considering selling off Litasco, which is its subsidiary based in Switzerland, because shady dealings of the parent company rub on Litasco.
New sanctions that the US has placed on Russia means that it has become extremely difficult for Lukoil and the Geneva based subsidiary, Litasco, to raise money.
And because Lukoil stocks trade in the US, the Trump administration can easily bring charges against the Russian company in respect of violation of the US’ Foreign Corrupt Practices Act or any other anti-bribery laws, Silverstein writes.
Again, Lukoil which operates gas stations in the US is also said to be prosecutorially exposed to the British government, which only needs political will to start prosecutions.
Edward BumptyAkufo-Addo has since been contacted to speak to the allegations, to which he flatly denied.
“I am afraid your premise that I am negotiating a contract for a company called Litasco is entirely erroneous. I am therefore unable to answer or comment upon any of your subsequent questions and inferences. Thank you Regards,” Bumpty had replied via email.
However, Kevin Silverstein who has done a series of investigative pieces on Bumpty and his connections with the gas companies pooh-poohs the denial by Bumpty, citing details from documents and meetings in London between Bumpty and Litasco officials.
Mr. Silverstein appears to be prepared to go to court if Bumpty would muster the conviction to clear his name in court.
Source: therepublicnewsonline.com/Fiifi Samuels