The Deputy Minister of Trade, Robert Ahomka Lindsay, could be hauled before the Public Accounts Committee for allegedly peddling untruths about the Komenda Sugar Factory, including a claim that factory did not produce any sugar.
This follows a petition by the former Secretary to the Management Board of the Factory, Ransford Vanni-Amoah, accusing Mr. Lindsay of perjury.
Speaking to Citi News, Chairman of the Public Accounts Committee, James Avedzi, said the deputy minister could lose his position if such claims turn out to be true.
According to Vanni-Amoah, a former member and secretary of the Komenda Sugar Project Management Board, the Deputy Minister committed perjury when he appeared before the PAC to provide answers to a report by the Auditor General pertaining to the Ministry of Trade and Industry.
He petitioned the PAC, citing events, places and dates that the $35 million Komenda Sugar factory operated, asserting that the Deputy Trade Minister told a blatant lie in his submission to the Committee.
“The petitioner is saying that this is not the true fact. He is saying that actual sugarcane was put into the process from the beginning up to the end which means that Sugar Produced from sugar cane, but that is not the position held by the minister [Ahomka Lindsay],” Mr. Avedzi said.
The PAC Chair added that matter could end up in Parliament if the deputy minister did not show the needed remorse should it be demanded of him.
“If it is found that it [the allegation] is true, and he has admitted that what he said was not true, we will give him the opportunity to apologise and if he refuses to apologise then we will refer the matter to Parliament because it amounts to perjury and he can even lose his position as a minister.”
The committee is still studying the petition at the moment and it hasn’t “taken a decision to invite the minister yet,” Mr. Avedzi added.
When the current New Patriotic Party government was in opposition at the time of the factory’s commissioning, the viability of the $35 million-factory was called into question, with claims it was simply a vote-buying ploy.
Mr. Ahomka Lindsey continued these concerns, suggesting that Komenda Sugar Factory will lie idle longer than expected challenges, including the lack of raw materials, have stalled full operations.
He has claimed that the variety of sugarcane planted on lands secured for sugar production at Komenda did not contain the appropriate levels of sugar content for production, though persons from the Mahama administration disputed these claims.