The Member of Parliament for North Tongu, Samuel Okudjeto Ablakwa, has said the former President and flagbearer of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), John Dramani Mahama, is the only sitting President under Ghana’s fourth republic to have prosecuted his own appointee.
The NDC MP made the claim on Saturday, October 3, 2020, on Joy News’ news analysis program, Newsfile, while touting the records of the former president’s achievements in Ghana’s fight against corruption.
The claim has been verified by Fact-check Ghana. Below is the verdict and explanation.
Claim: “Former President, Mahama remains the only President under the fourth republic to have prosecuted his own.
It clearly shows he is really committed to the corruption fight. President Mahama has a better track record.”
Verdict: Completely False
Explanation: It is untrue that former President Mahama is the only President under Ghana’s fourth republic to have prosecuted one of his appointees.
In January 2001, Mallam Yusif Issa, the then Sports Minister under the newly elected New Patriotic Party (NPP) government, was arrested after failing to account for money given to him for a trip to Sudan.
Mallam Issa, claimed the money, US $46,000, which was meant as an imprest and payment of bonuses of members of the senior national team, the Black Stars, during a World Cup qualifying match in Sudan on February 25, 2001, was missing. This resulted in his dismissal by President Kufour who also permitted prosecution measures to begin.
On July 20, 2001 a Fast Track High Court sentenced Mallam Issa to Prison on two charges – stealing the money, and fraudulently causing the loss of the money to the state.
The court also ordered Mallam Yusif Issa to refund the money. On top of that he was fined 10,000,000 old Ghana Cedis, which was equivalent to £1,000 as at 2001.
It is therefore completely false for Okudjeto Ablakwa to claim that NDC Flagbearer John Mahama remains the only President under the fourth republic to prosecute his own.