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SADA invests GHc74.5m in Board Chairman's bank but...

2014-04-07 19:50:49
This article has been read 948 times.

Months of investigations into the operations of the Savannah Accelerated Development Authority by Joy News have uncovered alleged financial malfeasance of various degrees.

SADA was created to coordinate development to bridge the gap between the north and the south.

But its operations have been bedeviled by alleged corruption, improper award of contracts among others.

In the first of a series of investigations titled the Sad SADA Story, Manasseh Azure Awuni reports of a murky investment deal of GHc74.5 million.

According to a budget monitoring report submitted to parliament for the 2012 financial year, the SADA earmarked GHc23,120,000 as its investment for that year.

The Authority however ended up investing over GHc74, 341,000, that is GHc51,311,000 more than it budgeted.

The budget monitoring statement does not provide details of the investment but a recent audit report Joy News intercepted in the course of the investigation reveals that the amount was invested in a call account at the Movenpick branch of Stanbic Bank here in Accra.

According to the report management of SADA could not produce the Investment certificate as evidence of the deposit made.

Management also failed to disclose the interest that had accrued on the investment. The audit report says there is the risk the investment could be lost to SADA in the event of any eventuality.

Another anomaly which the audit report found with the 74.5 million Ghana cedis investment is the type of investment made.

The report indicates that SADA could have invested the money in higher yielding accounts such as fixed deposit.

“On 20 December 2012, management invested an amount of GHc74,500,000.00 into a call account at the Stanbic Bank, Movenpick branch in Accra. We are of the opinion that the amount should rather be invested into a higher interest yielding account such as fixed deposit account to enable the Authority to earn higher interest,” the report stated.

It added that “Management also failed to produce the Investment certificate as evidence of the deposit made as well as the interest that had accrued on the investment. Prudent cash management requires that an investment of such magnitude should be supported with appropriate documentation apart from it appearing only on the bank statement.

The auditors warned that “there is the risk that the investment could be lost to SADA in the event of any unforeseen eventuality. We recommended that the Chief Executive should ensure that an investment certificate was obtained from the bank as well as the interest that had accrued on it to authenticate the transaction. We also recommended that the amount of GHc74,500,000.00 that have been put into Call account since December 2012 should rather be put into a fixed deposit account to earn higher interest for the Authority.”

Investment experts Joy News spoke to agreed with this assertion. Though they will not speak on record until they have seen details of the account, they have indicated that the call account can only be justified if SADA management negotiated a high interest rate. Management of SADA has refused to comment on the transaction.

Joy News also contacted the Board Chairman of SADA and Managing Director of Stanbic Bank, Alhassan Andani in whose bank the investment was made. He confirmed SADA had an investment account with Stanbic Bank.

But he declined to provide details of the interest rate and other details of the account. “I account to the president, and not you Manasseh and Joy FM,” he said.


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