BNI’s BOST findings ‘diversionary’ – ASEPA
The Alliance for Social Equity and Public Accountability (ASEPA) has indicated that the report by the Bureau of National Investigations and National Security on the controversial sale of contaminated fuel cannot end the matter.
The report sought to exonerate the Managing Director of the Bulk Oil Storage and Transportation Company Limited (BOST), Alfred Obeng Boateng, of any wrongdoing in the sale of five million litres of contaminated fuel which BOST sold to Movenpiina Company Limited.
However, ASEPA, in a press release on Wednesday, June 5, said the report is “very unfortunate and diversionary”.
In the release, the Executive Secretary of ASEPA, Thompson Mensah, said the group “believes irrespective of the work that BNI has done, the whole case needs a further look into”.
The release indicated that “the BNI and National Security may have been consumed by their mandate which is to look at matters of security concerns and may not have gone further to interrogate the matters of corruption and conflict of interest”.
For ASEPA, the situation is complex and needs the involvement of other bodies like the Economic and Organised Crime Office (EOCO) and parliament if need be for the details of the matter to be thoroughly addressed.
BNI INVESTIGATION OF BOST INCONCLUSIVE AND CANNOT CLEAR THE MD, WE DEMAND AN INDEPENDENT ENQUIRY
On Tuesday July 4th, the minister of Energy and Petroleum in a press statement indicted that BNI and National security have waded into an investigation on the BOST saga and have cleared the MD of any wrong doing.
We find this news as very unfortunate and diversionary.
Just a week ago the minister in similar press statement indicated his resolve to set up a committee made up of industry players and the regulator NPA to look into the matter. Even though we had issues with the terms of references and scope of the committee, we were confident that if the major players in the allegation step aside, the committee could do a thorough job.
That of course didn’t happen because the MD and his cohorts who took this critical decision have been at post till date.
We also raised issues about the alleged intimidation and victimisation of workers at BOST who were not in support of this action by MD, whether that was also interrogated in the supposed investigation by BNI we cannot ascertain.
Our biggest challenge has to do with the processes and procedures used in resolving matters of corruption allegation and bring finality to same.
First of all, when did BNI and National security commence their investigations into this matter?
Was it after the Minister has indicated in a press release his decision to set up a committee to investigate the issues or before?
In any case was the minister aware of this action by the BNI and National security?
If yes why did the minister decide to throw dust in the eyes of the public?
Now what happens to the committee set up by the minister?
Does the investigation of BNI automatically halt any form of enquiry?
We believe irrespective of the work that BNI has done,the whole case needs further look into.
The BNI and National security may have been consumed by their mandate which is to look at matters of security concerns and may not have gone further to interrogate the matters of corruption and conflict of interest.
Even so,does the BNI and National security have that capacity to look into such a complex non security case?
What about EOCO who have the capacity to look into complex administrative crimes such as this one?
We at ASEPA receives the report by with a pinch of salt,
The matter cannot close with a BNI and National security report, there are still several unanswered questions on the mind of Ghanaians and we believe an independent enquiry from parliament can do a more thorough nonpartisan job.
With no prejudice to the authority of BNI and National Security we call on EOCO to take a second look into this matter.
We may need third look as well from Parliament if it becomes necessary, because of the complexities of this matter we have to set a good precedence which may eventually become the standard in dealing with similar matters in future.
It is only ourselves that possess the powers to make our system work,we owe our country that utmost responsibility.
Executive Secretary ASEPA