National Cathedral: Tonnes of steel, project vehicle and others stolen from site – Ablakwa claims

Member of Parliament for North Tongu, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, has accused President Akufo-Addo of being delusional and insulting by claiming to have a superior track record in the fight against corruption.

Ablakwa was reacting to the President’s recent speech on his anti-corruption efforts during the Ghana Bar Conference held in Cape Coast on Monday, September 11, 2023.

President Akufo-Addo touted his administration’s accomplishments in the battle against corruption. He cited the establishment of the Office of the Special Prosecutor, the passage of the Right to Information Act, 2019 (Act 989), the Witness Protection Act, 2018 (Act 975), and the Criminal Offences (Amendment) Act, 2020 (Act 1034) as evidence of his commitment to combatting corruption.

In his speech, the President said he has taken several measures to combat corruption, such as establishing the Office of the Special Prosecutor, passing the Right to Information Act, 2019 (Act 989), the Witness Protection Act, 2018, (Act 975), and the Criminal Offences (Amendment) Act, 2020, (Act 1034).

“I accepted the invitation to speak here in order to take advantage of this occasion to place, once again, my government’s record on corruption for public scrutiny. It will show that my government has undertaken, arguably, the boldest initiatives since our nation attained independence, nearly sixty-six (66) years ago, to reform and strengthen the capacity of our institutions to tackle corruption in the public sector.

“…so far, every single alleged act of corruption levelled against any of my appointees has been investigated by independent bodies, such as CHRAJ, the CID, and, in some cases, by Parliament itself. It is not my job to clear or convict any person accused of wrongdoing, or of engaging in acts of corruption. That is the job of the courts and the law enforcement agencies. My job is to act on allegations of corruption by referring the issue or issues to the proper investigative agencies for the relevant enquiry and action, including, if necessary, the suspension of the affected official, pending the conclusion of investigations. That is exactly what has been done since I assumed the mantle of leadership on 7th January 2017,” the president said.

However, Ablakwa dismissed these claims as mere rhetoric and propaganda and challenged the President to account for the US$58 million he allegedly spent on digging a pit for the construction of the National Cathedral.

But the bombshell revelation that has got many talking is Ablakwa’s disclosure regarding the ongoing thefts plaguing the hallowed National Cathedral construction site. According to his “unimpeachable sources,” the site has fallen victim to a spree of thefts.

“The cathedral theft continues with latest information from my unimpeachable sources indicating that tonnes of steel (rebars), a project vehicle and a flat screen television in the project manager’s office are part of the growing list of items which have recently been stolen from this supposedly holy construction site — an abandoned project site which is strangely also under national security protection and yet recording major incidents of plunder,” Ablakwa wrote on his Twitter page.

Ablakwa said these incidents expose the President’s hypocrisy and incompetence in dealing with corruption, and urged him to stop deceiving the public with his empty promises.

“President Akufo-Addo must certainly be delusional. It is such an insult to hear the only President in the world who has dug a pit with US$58million and still managed to owe his cathedral contractors an extra US$52million tout an imaginary superior track record in the fight against corruption,” he added.

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