The level of outrage is high, as Ghanaians try and fail to understand how our beloved country sunk to this level, of brazen public corruption and a leadership that simply does not care.
Whilst the default position should always be do not be corrupt, or at least carry it out in moderation- the norm in our country these days is do it in excess, and lie through your teeth when the public finds out.
Recently, the bus rebranding saga is what has been on the minds of Ghanaians, after it came to light that Ghc 3.6m had been spent rebranding 116 Metro Mass buses aimed to augment the existing fleet. That is almost $1m spent on putting stickers of former Presidents on buses.
No matter how you sliced it, the numbers did not add up. And then it emerged that the company that carried out the contract is Smarty’s Management & Productions- headed by none other than popular actress Selassie Ibrahim.
Selassie has a long and distinguished history with the NDC. Back in 2010 when she launched her company, the guest of honour was none other than then Vice President, John Dramani Mahama. She played a huge role in the wave of celebrities, including John Dumelo- that rose up to lend their support to John Mahama, leading to his ascent to power in 2012.
From the exploits of Ibrahim Mahama, we know this government is not shy rewarding those close to it for their fidelity. Yet on top of all these, Selassie Ibrahim has a bigger trump card than most people- which is that her husband is a big time NDC guru.
Ibrahim Adam served as a minister under President Rawlings, during which time he became engulfed in several corruption scandals as Minister of Agriculture. He was jailed in 2003 for the much talked about quality grain scandal, involving the former minister and other accomplices causing financial loss to the state to the tune of $22m. Ibrahim Adam was released almost two years later, and his standing in the NDC has not been affected in any significant ways, besides perhaps the few impediments being an ex-con raises to anyone.
But Smartty’s involvement in this scandal would rightly raise questions of how involved Ibrahim Adam is in all this? Is he conspiring with his wife to defraud the citizens of this good country? It isn’t like he is any stranger to fraudulent deals, and the facts of the bus rebranding saga as we have discovered, are as fraudulent as they come.
The Chief of Staff, after receiving a report from the Attorney General’s Department, has ordered Smarttys to pay back Ghc 1.9m of the Ghc 3.6m the rebranding supposedly cost. That right there is the first admission of guilt, that deliberate over bloating of figures was done by those involved. That had even already been proven when the company that placed the stickers on the bus revealed they charged Ghc 100 per bus, but Smartty’s invoice to government showed a charge of Ghc 2,000 per bus. It show a collusion that originates from the very top.
And whatever government wants us to think with this sham order, this had to have been an elaborate scheme or the money would never have been approved, much like in the Woyome scandal. Like Woyome, it had to take someone who had massive clout in the party to navigate all the roadblocks, and Ibrahim Adam certainly has that clout.
Whichever way you look at it, Selassie Ibrahim played a big part in a scheme to defraud the people of Ghana. It is patently absurd to reach the conclusion that such a deal went down, with the government, with such an NDC guru like Adam being oblivious of it. Is that where we are now, where people and their spouses make schemes to benefit unduly off the toils of all of us? Is it really credible to believe that the Ibrahim’s aren’t together in this?
And keep in mind, this is just what we know about. The dread of the corrupt deals we have no frigging clue of should be enough to kill any self reflecting Ghanaian.