Member of Parliament’s finance committee, Dr Cassiel Ato Forson called the accusations against him false and futile.
According to him, his lawsuits for his involvement in the purchase of 200 ambulances are only an attempt to silence him because of his relentless stand against Bill E-Levy.
Speaking at a press conference to set the record straight, Dr Ato Forson insisted that he had not authorized payment for the purchase of said ambulances.
âIt should be noted that I, Cassiel Ato Forson, did not authorize the payment of said Â£ 2,370,000. But my only job in the whole transaction was to request the issuance of letters of credit on the authorization. of the Minister in charge of Finance at the time, âhe declared.
He explained that a letter of credit was only a guarantee âthat payment from a buyer to a seller will be received on time and for the correct amount. And in the event that the buyer is unable to make payment on the purchase, the bank will be required to recover the full or remaining amount of the purchase.
âLetters of credit are not payment. I did not authorize the payment, âhe stressed.
He therefore challenged the government to provide evidence proving that he had authorized payment for the purchase of the said ambulances.
âUnless someone tells me they don’t understand the meaning of letters of credit. It is just a guarantee and not a payment in itself. In fact, in the letter of credit that was issued, someone had to authorize this payment, and certainly not me. At the right time, we will ensure that this document is available, âhe said.
The 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.
Both are ; Sylvestre Anemana who was Director General at the Ministry of Health when the alleged crimes were allegedly committed and a businessman, Richard Jakpa.
The case concerns the purchase of 200 ambulances by the government led by Professor John Evans Atta Mills and John Mahama. Documents filed by the GA’s office trace the events that led to the alleged crimes until an announcement in the 2009 State of State Address regarding plans to provide ambulances for the country.
The GA said that following this address, the Ministry of Health (MOH) took steps to acquire more ambulances. The 3rd defendant, Richard Jakpa, allegedly used his company, Jakpa at Business, to present a proposal and a term loan to the Ministry of Health which he claimed to have arranged with Stanbic Bank to finance the supply of the 200 ambulances to the government.
The Cabinet, according to the GA, gave executive approval for the project.
However, it later emerged that the ambulances had flaws that made them unusable.