The Auditor-General has indicted the Judicial Service for an unapproved auction of vehicles to judges and has ordered the retrieval of the 19 vehicles.
The list of beneficiaries of the auctioned vehicles includes judges of the lower courts, judicial service staff and three retired Supreme Court judges who bought six out of the 19 vehicles.
The Judges and Magistrates Association had defended the acquisition, saying it is a convention that goes as far back as the Kufuor administration. The Auditor-General says the transaction is at odds with the Public Management Regulations 2019 which requires that any auction by a public entity must have the approval of the Minister of Finance.
The findings are contained in the 2021 Auditor-General’s report, which covered ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs).
“Regulation 158 of Public Financial Management Regulations, 2019 (L.I. 2378) states that the Principal Spending Officer of a covered entity shall obtain the prior written approval of the Minister for the transfer, exchange, sale, donation, contribution-in-kind, trust and any other disposal of any vehicles of the covered entity,” the report said.
“In the absence of approval from the Minister for Finance, we recommended that the auction should be nullified, and the vehicles recovered,” the Auditor-General directed.
Here is a list of beneficiaries of the auction.
|No.||Name of Officer||Type of vehicle||Vehicle Registration No.||Value (GH¢)|
|1||H/L Justice F. G. Korbieh||Toyota Land Cruiser||GR 8132-17||57,975.00|
|2||H/L Justice N. S. Gbadegbe||Toyota Land Cruiser||GR 4158-17||67,047.00|
|3||H/L Justice N. S. Gbadegbe||Toyota Avalon Saloon||GR 2777-14||27,570.90|
|4||H/W Charles Y. Boateng||Toyota Corolla Saloon||GM 8311-13||9,090.00|
|5||H/L Justice Julius Ansah||Toyota Land Cruiser||GR 4128-17||75,643.00|
|6||H/L Justice Julius Ansah||Toyota Avalon Saloon||GT 2774-14||40,920.06|
|7||H/L Justice Asmah K. Asiedu||Toyota Corolla Saloon||GN 4997-13||8,399.00|
|8||Robert Cudjoe||Toyota Corolla Saloon||GM 9231-13||12,687.00|
|9||H/L Justice Lawrence L Mensah||Toyota Land Cruiser||GR 1902-17||67,192.00|
|10||H/L Barbara W. Acquah||Toyota Fortuner Station Wagon||GN 57-18||92,914.00|
|11||H/L Thomas Ofedie||Toyota Corolla Saloon||GM 6826-13||7,509.00 12.|
|12||H/L Justice Jennifer A Tagoe||Toyota Fortuner-SUV||GT 75-18||87,887.00|
|13||H/L Justice E. K. Mensah||Toyota Fortuner-SUV||GT 30-18||59,000.00|
|14||H/L Justice N. C. Agbevor||Toyota Land Cruiser||GT 796-19||123,620.00|
|15||H/L Elizabeth Ankumah||Toyota Fortuner-SUV||GT 39-18||107,271.00|
|16||H/L Justice Yaw Appau||Toyota Land Cruiser 200 (v8)||GR 6590-17||56,606.00|
|17||H/L Justice Yaw Appau||Toyota Avalon saloon||GT 2945-14||48,632.00|
|18||H/L Justice Jacob B. Boon||Toyota Avensis||GM 517-15||13,100.00|
|19||H/L Justice Nathaniel Osam||Toyota Fortuner SUV||GT 49-18||60,445.00|
The government’s policy used to be that public officials could buy state vehicles that were over two years old when the officials were leaving office.
However, it often became a politically charged issue whenever power changed hands. The exiting administration is often accused of selling state vehicles cheaply to exiting government officials.
The arrangement had become a byword for corruption in the country to the extent that in April 2017, President Nana Akufo-Addo banned such transactions.
“These are difficult times for the Ghanaian people. The policy that has worked so far which is running into a lot of problems because of the way it has been abused, which is that officials can buy official cars. That policy will no longer work. No official is going to have the opportunity to buy his official car. So, we put an end to it,” the President told journalists after a ministers’ retreat at the Peduase Lodge in the Eastern Region.
YOU MAY ALSO WANT TO READ: