The Attorney-General (AG) has described as absurd and misleading, concerns raised by the Ranking Member of Parliament’s Finance Committee, Cassiel Ato Forson over charges of causing financial loss to the state levelled against him.

A statement signed by the Deputy Attorney-General, Diana Asonaba Dapaah on behalf of the Attorney-General indicated that “the Office of the Attorney-General will zealously prosecute crimes bordering on abuse of public funds which have been fully investigated and are considered to be worthy of prosecution.”

The statement added that “all persons in Ghana are equal before the law. The status of a Member of Parliament is no bar to prosecution for a crime committed.”

This is in reaction to Dr Forson’s comments during a press conference on 24 December,2021 that the charges against him are merely a tactic by the ruling government to cow him away from pursuing the rejection of the E-Levy Bill.

The Ajumako-Enyan-Esiam MP, stressed that he remains unrelenting in his stance against the E-Levy Bill, which the Minority Caucus has described as insensitive to the plight of suffering Ghanaians.

“Neither myself working as the Ranking Member of the Finance Committee of Ghana’s Parliament nor the Minority group in Parliament will relent on our fight to ensure that the feet of this profligate government is held to fire.

“We would stand firm and protect the people of Ghana from misrule and poor economic policy choices. Not even a million prosecutions will stop us in our quest to ensure accountability and transparency in the management of public funds,” Dr Ato Forson said.

But the AG has dismissed such claims. According to the AG’s statement, investigation into the issue, dates back to 2017, adding that a number of statements have been taken from various persons at different points in time.

“In June, 2021, the investigations proceeded to finalise preparations by the Criminal Investigations Department of the Ghana Police Service towards the commencement of criminal proceedings against persons deemed fit for prosecution by the Attorney-General. Further statements were taken from various persons. At that stage, no issue relating to the 2022 Budget and Economic Policy of the Government had come up,” portions of the statement read.

Background

Attorney-General’s office has filed criminal charges including causing financial loss to the state against former Deputy Finance Minister, Dr. Cassiel Ato Forson and two others namely; Sylvester Anemana, a former Chief Director at the Ministry of Health and a businessman, Richard Jakpa.

The case relates to the procurement of 200 ambulances by the Prof. John Evans Atta Mills and John Mahama-led government. Documents filed by the AG’s office traced the events culminating into the alleged crimes to an announcement made in the 2009 State of the Nation Address regarding plans to procure ambulances for the country.

Read the full statement below: