All the officials who played a role in the Sputnik V contract including the Finance Minister Ken Ofori Atta should be held liable for this development, Member of Parliament for Daffiama/Bussie Issa, Dr. Sebastian Sandare has said.
He said the Health Minister, Kwaku Agyeman-Manu alone cannot be blamed for the botched deal.
“It is not only the Minister of Health that should go, all those in the procurement value chain should go.
“The Minister of Finance should go, from what we heard the Minister of Finance paid the paid the money without the Minister of Health’s notice,” Dr Sandare who is also a member of the Health Committee in Parliament said on the Key Points on TV3 Saturday August 14 hosted by Dzifa Bampoh.
On the conduct of the Health Minister in this particular deal, Dr Sandare said Mr Agyeman-Manu failed the integrity test.
He said that the breach of the procurement laws in the process smacks of a failure to meet the integrity test.
“The pressure on the minister shows that he failed the integrity test,” he told host Dzifa.
“He breached procurement procedure and a whole lot” and that is why people are asking him to step aside, he added.
Meanwhile, Mr Agyeman-Manu has said he has always acted in ways that protect the public purse in his public life.
He was heavily criticized by a some Ghanaians following the botched Sputnik V contract with some calling on him to resign or be fired by the President.
For instance, Dr Seidu Alidu, a Political Science Lecturer at the University of Ghana, has said he must be punished for the alleged procurement breaches in the Sputnik V contract in order to serve as a deterrent to others,
Dr Alidu said, in spite of the fact that the country was going through a crisis of this nature the right procedure, as well as the rules and regulations should have been followed by the Minister of Health in procuring of the vaccines.
He said on the Key Points hosted by Dzifa Bampoh on TV3 on Saturday August 7 that “We don’t live in a jungle, we live in a democracy and democracy prescribes institutions and procedures for doing everything.
“There are institutions, there are set laws, there are regulations governing how things should be done in this manner and the processes under which it should be done. Even though we are facing an unprecedented health crisis, when the president wanted to fight this, he had to go to parliament and seek permission.
“With restrictions of movement, the president could have said that we are facing crisis so we shouldn’t come out but he thought that we are in a democracy and he needs to use the right procedure to fight the crisis. I think the minister should not have lost sight of the fact that regardless of the circumstances we are still in a democracy and the appropriate rules and procedure must be applied.
“This is not first time minister, he is very experienced minister and he has even been a chairman of the PAC when issues of this kind came he presided over them.
“I don’t think we should just stop at retrieving the money. Something has to be done so that people just don’t think you can do things and be asked to retrieve the money. We need to set a very serious precedent and make the breaches of the law more costly.”
But a statement issued by the Minister said “In all my public life as Deputy Minister, Chairman of the Public Accounts Committee and now as Minister, I have been guided by the mandate to protect the public purse at all times and as Minister of Health to also safeguard Ghanaian lives especially during this pandemic.”