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You Can’t Sit on SML Audit Report- Prof Gyampo To Akufo-Addo

Prof Ransford Gyampo, a Political Science Lecturer at the University of Ghana (UG) has petitioned President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo to release the audit report by KPMG on the revenue assurance contract between Strategic Mobilisation Ghana Limited (SML) and the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA).

He opines that the Ghanaian populace reserves their right to know the content of the report with the responsibility of the government to uphold transparency in its dealings paramount.

In an open letter to the President, he said, “I am told KPMG has submitted its report on the SML deal. Given that there were serious allegations of corruption about the deal by a media house, I write as a Citizen to respectfully remind you that, you cannot sit on the report.”

The outspoken lecturer asserts that the already “tattered” legacy of the President in the fight against corruption could be salvaged in his manipulation of the SML deal.

“At the moment, rumours are being peddled that, you probably want to “cover up” or tamper with the report. A simple swift publication of the report would prevent these rumours from festering. Respectfully, Sir, even though you are done and exiting, I think you must be interested in the legacy you are leaving behind in promoting good governance, accountability, transparency, responsiveness and in the fight against corruption.”

The GRA has awarded three contracts to SML since 2019 to detect invoice fraud, fight under-declaration of fuel volumes and, by extension, taxes collected by the fuel marketers from consumers on behalf of the government and then an expansion to minerals exported by Ghana.

The contacts are reported to have been awarded through sole sourcing.

According to the Media Foundation for West Africa (MFWA) who first brought this to the attention of the public, investigations revealed SML is not tackling any of the problems and malfeasance that was identified in causing leakages in the sector.

It also established that SML by the contract will be paid US$100 million by the government of Ghana for the “revenue assurance” it provides.

The GRA in a statement in December 2023 denied SML was being paid for no work done.

“The work of SML over the period has led to a significant increase in the figures reported in the downstream petroleum sector, from an average of 350 million litres per month in 2018 and 2019, to 450 million litres per month from 2020/2021.

“This represents over a thirty- three per cent (33%) increase in volume reporting and an average of an extra 100 million litres per month at a levy rate of GHS1.44p. The extra revenue variance gained for the two (2) years will exceed GHS3 billion. This performance is attributable mainly to the introduction of ICUMS and SML systems.”

On January 2, president Akufo-Addo appointed KPMG to audit the contracts and subsequently directed the Ministry of Finance and GRA to suspend the performance of the contracts, pending the submission of the audit report, including any payments presently envisaged under their terms.


Source: /Hajara Fuseini

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