EOCO Storms NLA Over 2016 Chop-Chop
…Ben, Others Arrested
A procurement audit into financial dealings of the National Lotteries Authority (NLA) for the year 2015/2016 has revealed some fishy findings with suspected gross infractions of the Public Procurement Act.
The findings have led to the arrest of the NLA head of procurement, Ben Bleppony and two others who are currently helping the Economic and Organised Crime Unite Office (EOCO) with investigations into the suspected crime.
The said financial impropriety happened under the tenure of Brigadier-General Martin Ahiaglo (rtd) as Director-General of the NLA before the Nana Akufo-Addo led government was voted into office.
The suspected ‘chop-chop’ had to do with contracts for the supply of computer and computer accessories as well as barcodes.
Reports say the arrested officers have been granted bail but are helping in investigations. They are most likely to be arraigned before court if found culpable in any of the suspected financial impropriety.
The NLA has hitherto remained a major source of leakage in government revenue where private suppliers were able to make more money into their personal bank accounts that what the NLA was able to make for the state.
For the past six months, an attempt by the Togbe Francise Nyonyo chaired Board and new Director-General, Kofi Osei-Ameyaw, to seal the revenue leakage has attracted some internally generated aggression against the latter who has resulted become a target of smear campaign and one-sided trial by media agenda.
The strategy has been to throw nasty media reports out in the public domain, set an agenda for the stories to become a topical issue, get particular anti-corruption organizations to pick it up and call on the President, Nana Akufo-Addo to sack the NLA boss and to order a probe into it the allegations.
Meanwhile, the results of the blockage in revenue leakage has led to the current Board and DG generating more money into the Consolidated fund than in previous years. The jump in percentage has been almost a hundred percent.
BLOCKING REVENUE LEAKAGE
Still under the new measures to block leakages in revenue, the NLA set to operate its own lotteries platform rather than continue to outsource the job to private companies that were charging government some GHC3Million per month.
The new platform would be owned and operated by the NLA and the new arrangement would mean government would save an additional GHC3Million every month apart from the extra close to GHC20 million that the new NLA leadership is now paying into the Consolidated Fund.
This new initiative has however not gone down well with some beneficiaries of the existing system and they have teamed up to stage a coup against Osei-Ameyaw so as to ensure the status quo continues.