Member of Parliament for North Tongu, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, has disclosed the actual details on the flight that supposedly brought the MP for Dome-Kwabenya, Sarah Adwoa Safo, back into the country to pass a vote on the controversial E-Levy in late 2021.
Having become quite notorious for disclosing the details of private jet flights that involve especially the president in recent times, the MP has this time said that it is surprising that in the case of the embattled Dome-Kwabenya MP, the focus has been on an alleged GH¢120,000 paid to her as ‘bribe’ to return to do her work.
He said there is a bigger fish to catch and that is with the expenses that were made on the MP, as well as the kind of aircraft that was rented to bring her back home.
“It is surprising that the focus of many including Civil Society Organisations in the series of Adwoa Asafo revelations has been on the alleged GH¢120,000.00 transfer into her bank account from the Chief of Staff.
“The cost of the private jet used to ferry her from the USA to Ghana which is much higher than the GH¢120,000.00 cannot be ignored.
“We now know that a Gulfstream G-550 registered HB-JOE and operated by Premium Jet AG based in Belgium was the executive aircraft chartered to bring in Hon. Adwoa Safo for her vote on the obnoxious E-Levy,” he wrote in a post on his Facebook page.
“It cost US$4,800 an hour to rent the HB-JOE.
“With an 11-hour flight distance, payment of reposition fees (as it flew from Belgium to pick her up in the States), payment of one-way fees (as the business jet flies back home empty), crew per diem fees, landing and wait-time fees; it cost a staggering US$140,000.00. At today’s exchange rate, that is GH¢948,500.00,” he added.
Further, he expressed great worry at the fact that it has been touted that the country is broke and for this reason, the controversial Electronic Transactions Levy (E-Levy) is being vigorously pursued as a way of getting some revenue to run the economy.
The North Tongu MP added that with other issues such as the unresolved, unpaid allowances of some members of the Nation Builders’ Corps (NABCO), among others bedeviling the government, it chooses to prioritize the vote of a single ‘AWOL’ MP.
“It is most intriguing that an economy which is said to be broke can lavish a fantastic GH¢948,500.00 plus GH¢120,000.00 (a total of GH¢1,068,500.00) just for one E-Levy vote. Imagine what our country can do with 1million Cedis in the midst of our economic challenges, NABCO demonstrations and labour agitations?
“The dubious claim that Adwoa Sarfo’s flight cost was paid for by her friends is most insulting. Who are these friends? What is their motivation? Why do these friends want the unpopular E-Levy passed so badly? What do these friends expect in return? What are the tax records of these friends? Why are these friends being shielded?
Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, therefore, charged the Office of the Special Prosecutor to look into the matter, calling for more patriotic dealings of the government in the future.
“The Office of Special Prosecutor must look into the entire GH¢1,068,500.00 expenditure for Adwoa Safo’s E-Vote and not only the GH¢120,000.00 deposited in her account.
“The current composition of Ghana’s 8th Parliament should lead us to a patriotic, mature and frugal path of consensus building in the national interest; and not the present embarrassing spectre of opting for an extremely partisan, destructive, wasteful, small-minded and reckless road to perdition,” he wrote.
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