New Patriotic Party (NPP) has disclosed that the Mahama-led National Democratic Congress (NDC) administration has paid about GH¢949,661,017 through Ghana Youth Employment and Entrepreneurial Agency (GYEEDA), now Youth Employment Agency to Rlg Communications Ghana Limited for no work done.
The information and communications technology (ICT) company owned by a Ghanaian entrepreneur, Mr. Roland Agambire, NPP revealed, was “owing” another GH¢259,000,000 when the December 2012 general elections were over.
“Thus, as much as GH¢1,208,661,017 was spent on an elaborate, corrupt scheme, created mainly to assist President John Mahama hold on to power in 2012, using the false excuse of creating jobs for the young people of Ghana. Four years on, still, everyone in two young persons are unemployed.”
This was revealed by the Policy Advisor of the NPP, Mr. Boakye Agyarko, at a news conference at the party’s headquarters in Accra yesterday.
He pointed out that it was useful to recollect that the NPP’s National Youth Employment programme was launched on October 3rd, 2006.
According to him, by the time NPP left office on January 7, 2009 about 110,000 young people were employed under the scheme, earning incomes and not a single allegation of scandal was linked to the National Youth Employment Programme (NYEP) for two years.
He pointed out that the first innovative policy initiated by the NDC when it took office was to change the name from NYEP to GYEEDA, after which they proceeded to lay off all the 110,000 young Ghanaians under the NYEP.
“Yet, after spending an equivalent of nearly half a billion dollars, the NDC has not been able to employ more than 70,000 young Ghanaians under the scheme in eight years,” he added.
According to Mr. Agyarko, it was by this time in 2012 that hundreds of millions of Ghana Cedis were released for unbudgeted expenditure, including payments to Rlg Communications Ghana Limited, for distribution of laptops embossed with President Mahama’s campaign pictures.
The NPP policy advisor alleged that the amounts fraudulently abused under these so-called employment schemes went to companies with very close links to President Dramani Mahama from the womb of the AGAMS Group such as rLG, Craftpro and Asongtaba.
Some of the payments made to AGAMS, he mentioned, for instance, were laundered and rechanneled to fund campaign spending on billboards, newspaper, TV and radio adverts for the President and his party, the NDC.
“Indeed, such was the impunity used in abusing public funds that the benefiting media houses did not even bother to question why cheques from AGAMS were issued to them for payments of adverts done for the ruling party.
He said an illegal loan of GH¢50 million was also advanced to the AGAMS Group by GYEEDA.
Mr. Agyarko also mentioned that the Ghana National Education Coalition in 2013 complained about the fact that the laptop contract, sole-sourced to rLG, using a cheap Ubuntu software, was twice as expensive as other similar computers on the local retail market.
He indicated that GYEEDA, which replaced the National Youth Employment Programme of the NPP, was set up ostensibly to offer jobs for young Ghanaians.
“Instead, it became a conduit for looting state funds and funding the President’s 2012 campaign,” he averred.
To date, the NPP man wondered why not a single person has been successfully prosecuted for the blatant and systematic theft of state funds.