Former President John Dramani Mahama has denied he influenced the award of a contract for the construction of a guest house at Bole in the Northern Region to “enable him enjoy comfortable holidays during visits to his constituency” when he was President.

The allegation, according to Mr Mahama’s Special Aide, Joyce Bawah Mogtari, was made by the Chief Executive Officer of the Ghana Cocoa Board (COCOBOD), Joseph Boahen Aidoo, at a press conference in Accra on Wednesday.

Reacting to the allegation, Mrs Mogtari said the claim is “false”.

According to her, the guest house in question, the Cocoa Research Institute of Ghana (CRIG) Research Station Guest House, has been in existence since 1975, and could not possibly have been constructed during the tenure of Mr Mahama.

To this end, she said the assertion that Mr Mahama influenced the construction of the guest house is false.

In a statement, Mrs Mogtari explained that: “The station conducts research into sheanut and cashew, to boost production of these two crops in Brong Ahafo, Upper West, Upper East and Northern regions that constitute the Northern Savannah zone.

“Also, the CRIG Research facility includes the guest house that has always provided commercial accommodation services to officials of COCOBOD and any other person that requires its use.

“A decision by the Board of COCOBOD to renovate the facility, after many years of use cannot be needless, and does not require the influence of the President of the Republic, as he then was.”

The statement further added that: “The office of the former President has noted a regrettable pattern of false and inaccurate information put out by the Chief Executive of COCOBOD, intended to slander the former President as a way of covering up bad management practices and decisions identified and highlighted by the NDC Minority in Parliament about the country’s cocoa sector.

“Such an unwholesome practice will only serve to detract from the important business of managing the cocoa sector, which is the lifeblood of the Ghanaian economy.

“The Office wishes to encourage Mr Boahen Aidoo to pay greater attention to discharging the weighty responsibility entrusted to him, devoid of unnecessary partisanship and mudslinging.”


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