The National Cathedral Secretariat has denied making payments to the tune of GH¢28 million to Cary Summers, an American consultancy firm as charges to allegedly organize a fundraiser in the United States for the National Cathedral project.
The Member of Parliament for the North Tongu Constituency, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, had accused the Secretariat of seeking the services of the firm that specializes in organizing Christian fundraisers to help it raise money to complete the project which subsequently led to the alleged payments.
The Secretariat was also accused of paying the architect for the project, Sir David Adjaye thirty-four percent of the total contract sum.
“The Akufo-Addo Govt & Cathedral Secretariat gave out a colossal GHS28.2million of taxpayer funds to Mr. Cary Summers, an American consultant & CEO of the Nehemiah Group who’s raised less than GHS800k in 3 years,” he posted on his Twitter handle.
More shocking revelations on the scandalous Cathedral project.
The Akufo-Addo Govt & Cathedral Secretariat gave out a colossal GHS28.2million of taxpayer funds to Mr. Cary Summers, an American consultant & CEO of the Nehemiah Group who’s raised less than GHS800k in 3 years. pic.twitter.com/v3I8HEORRu
— Sam Okudzeto Ablakwa (@S_OkudzetoAblak) January 7, 2023
But the Secretariat in a six-point press release denied all the allegations.
To the accusation of paying Cary Summers GH¢28 million as consultancy fees, the Secretariat explained that: “there is no contract for Cary Summers, but rather the Nehemiah group—of which Cary Summers, the founding President of the Museum of the Bible in Washington DC, and one of the world’s leading experts on religious theme parks, is the CEO. And this contract is for a set of consultancy services, the most important being the coordination of work on the National Cathedral’s Bible Museum of Africa, and the Biblical Gardens of Africa. As we have indicated, the integration of the Bible Museum –the largest in the world when completed – and the Biblical Gardens are aimed at transforming Ghana into a hub for international pilgrimage and tourism.”
“The work of the National Cathedral’s Bible Museum and Biblical Gardens involves some of the leading global firms, who between them have worked on some of the major museums in the world. They include: Kubik Maltbie; PRD; Cortina Productions; JMC. The payments to the Nehemiah group, therefore, is not to Cary Summers to organize a fundraiser, but to these world-class firms for their work on the Bible Museum and Biblical Gardens.”
The Secretariat said there is neither anything sinister nor hidden about the said contract which is breeding the rumours because “the National Cathedral Secretariat submitted a copy of the report of the completed Concept Design of the Bible Museum and Biblical Gardens to Parliament on December 15, 2022. And we indicated to Parliament that the full concept design report, and all related documentation, is available upon request to the Secretariat.”
The release added that despite these rumours and many others, “the Board and Management of the National Cathedral Project remain focused and committed to the completion of the National Cathedral, and would continue to do so with diligence, integrity, excellence, and accountability.”
Read the full release here