New Charges For Collins Dauda 4 Others

Collins Dauda

THE OFFICE of the Attorney General has indicated its decision to amend the charges levelled against Alhaji Collins Dauda, a former Minister of Water Resources, Works and Housing who doubles as NDC MP for Asutifi South in the Ahafo Region, and four others involved in the $200 million Saglemi Housing Project scandal.

The amendment would see the court retaking the pleas of the accused persons who had all pleaded not guilty to the 52 charges of wilfully causing financial loss to the state and others preferred against them.

It is unclear what changes would be made to the charges, but Hilda Craig, a Senior State Attorney informed the court about the intended amendment yesterday.

The court, presided over by Justice Elfreda Dankyi, subsequently adjourned the case to June 22, 2022, to make room for the amendment and to also allow the prosecution to file the remainder of their disclosures.

Alhaji Collins Dauda, together with Dr. Kwaku Agyemang-Mensah, a former Minister for Water Resources, Works and Housing; Alhaji Ziblim Yakubu, Chief Director at the Ministry for Water Resources, Works and Housing, contributed to the Saglemi Housing deal when it was prepared and signed. Also playing part were businessman Andrew Clocanas, Executive Chairman of Construtora OAS Ghana Limited, as well as Nouvi Tetteh Angelo, Chief Executive Officer and owner of Ridge Management Solutions Ghana Limited. The aforementioned are facing 52 charges, including causing financial loss to the state.

They are also facing charges of intentionally misapplying public property contrary to Section 1 (2) of the Public Property Protection Act, 1977 (SMCD) 140, issuing false certificate contrary to Sections 1 and 2 of the Government Contracts (Protection) Act, 1979, AFRCD 58, and dishonestly causing loss to public property contrary to Section 2 (1) of the Public Protection Act 1977 (SMCD) 140.

The state reportedly pumped about $200 million into the Saglemi Housing Project, which the Mills/ Mahama administration initiated, but the housing units were never completed, even though the funds had allegedly been exhausted before former President Mahama and his NDC team was defeated in the 2016 polls.

The initial agreement, ratified by Parliament, was for the construction of 5,000 housing units, but by the time the project was being executed, only 1,502 housing units had been earmarked for construction without recourse to Parliament.

Interestingly, the contract amount of $200 million was spent when even the 1,502 housing units could not fully be completed.

Only 668 were done, according to investigations compiled and sent to the Attorney General’s Department, and these are not even habitable.

BY Gibril Abdul Razak