A former Member of Parliament (MP) for the Nhyiaeso Constituency, Kennedy Kankam, has been ordered by the Auditor-General to recover GH₵ 500,000 that he oversaw disbursed to individuals as loans.
The Auditor-General’s report indicated that the monies, which amounted to the MP’s share of the District Assembly’s common fund, have not been paid since they were given to some 430 people in 2019.
Between the end of 2019 and the third quarter of 2020, the Kumasi Metropolitan Assembly (KMA) received GH₵ 4,821,929.80, of which Kankam allegedly requested GH₵ 500, 000.
Kankam, a former accountant with the KMA, is said to have asked a former finance officer of the KMA, Daniel Kankam, and coordinating director, Samuel Donkor, to transfer the funds from a Labour Project Fund and Social Investment Fund to a Barclays (now Absa) bank account.
The Krofrom branch of Absa Bank made GH₵ 9,675.00 on the service of disbursement, having charged GH₵ 22.50 on each transfer to the 430 individuals.
The recipients were all in the former MP’s constituency and they were supposed to pay by the end of August 2020.
But investigations conducted by the Auditor-General’s office with the Absa Bank branch manager where the money was initially transferred to and a KMA lawyer, Patrick Adu-Poku, showed that none of the monies had been recovered at the end of January 2021.
The report from the office of the country’s top auditor revealed that Adu-Poku, despite his position as the chief legal counsel of the KMA, did not assent to the process. It is not clear if this means the lawyer had no knowledge of the transfer.
There was also no arrangement with the 430 individuals to have them sign an agreement that requires them to pay the loans. This would have guaranteed the right of the KMA to mount a legal challenge to retrieve the funds from the individuals.
According to the Attorney-General, in spite of the dire situation, the KMA has so far not asked Absa to help in retrieving the funds. This, therefore, puts the metropolis at the risk of losing the monies out of sheer negligence and neglect.
About Kennedy Kankam
After years of public service at the KMA, Kankam upset the odds when he beat veteran New Patriotic Party (NPP) politician and former Minister of Health, Richard Anane, in a constituency primary in 2016.
Being a safe NPP seat, Nhyiaeso was almost destined to go Kankam’s way and he was sworn in as only the second MP in the constituency’s history in 2017.
But Kankam also lost his primary in 2020 to Stephen Amoah, a former head of the Microfinance and Small Loans Centre (MASLOC) in the first government of Nana Akufo-Addo.