Former Youth and Sports Minister, Nii Lantey Vanderpuye, has denied paying GHc 1.6 million Ghana in cash to the contractor of the New Edubiase Sports Stadium in the Ashanti region.
In a Parliamentary answer presented to the House on Thursday, the Ministry of Youth and Sports claimed it could not trace the source of funding for the said project.
It has also referred the matter to the National security for investigations.
Speaking to Citi News, Mr. Vanderpuye who was accused of making the payments said the procedures at the Ministry at the time would not have permitted him to pay the contractor in cash.
“I am not an accountant of the Ministry of Youth and Sports. As a minister, I don’t handle money. So I don’t make payments. I don’t pay cash. I don’t pay money to anyone. I don’t write cheques because I am not a Chief Director too.”
“So if any payments were done, the payments were done by the Ministry of Youth and Sports through the officials of the Ministry of Youth and Sports mandated by law to do those things and not me,” the former Minister insisted.
President John Mahama cut the sod for the construction of the 10,000 seater stadium back in 2016.
But the project has since been left unattended, although the current government promised to complete the construction.
According to the Sports Minister, the funding for the project was not captured in the budget for 2015 and 2016.
There is also no evidence of sponsorship for the project.
Denials from contractor firm
The company awarded the contract for the construction of the 10,000-seater stadium also denied receiving a sum of GH¢1.9million from former Youth and Sports Minister.
According to its CEO, for the work he had done so far, he was yet to receive any money from the government.
The CEO of the company, Nurudeen Shakdeen, in an interview on Eyewitness News said the project, which is in two phases, is still in the first phase where the project has stalled.
“I did not receive a cash of GHS1.9 million from Nii Lante Vandepuye. I did not receive that amount of money. It is an administrative issue…. The [cost of the] first phase is over GHS 5 million,” he said.
By: Delali Adogla-Bessa & Duke Mensah Opoku| citinewsroom.com | Ghana