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NDC Sharif Mahmud calls for resignation of Minister of Food and Agriculture

June 24, 2024
NDC Sharif Mahmud calls for resignation of Minister of Food and Agriculture

Dr. Sharif Mahmud Khalid, a member of the National Democratic Congress (), has called for the immediate resignation of the Minister of Food and Agriculture, .

Dr. Khalid cited the sale of 60% of the Social Security and National Insurance Trust's () stake in four hotels to Bryan Acheampong as the reason for his demand.

In an interview on The Big Issue on Channel One TV, Dr. Khalid expressed concerns over the lack of transparency in SSNIT's sale of the hotels to Rock City Hotel, owned by Minister Bryan Acheampong.

Dr. Khalid deemed the Minister's involvement in the deal as “problematic” and potentially conflicted, arguing that the process raises serious questions about accountability and the responsible management of public assets.

“For me, the involvement of a cabinet minister is problematic, no matter the stake. Look at the bid, there's no transparency in its and it smacks of insider trading.

“We don't have anything against Bryan Acheampong, it is the transaction we have issues with. And where he finds himself. If he wants, he can resign from cabinet, and go and run your business. He has already contaminated the transaction. It's not about Bryan, it's about the process,” he mentioned to Selorm Adonoo.

Dr Khalid cited the company's lack of experience in takeovers and acquisitions, criticising the government's decision to sell its stake to Rock City Hotel.

He further alleged that the government's close ties with Bryan Acheampong raise suspicions of favouritism and collusion, suggesting that the deal may not be in the best interest of the state or the public.

“Handing over 60% plus to an individual company defies corporate governance. What it means is that you walk to the board room with a massive majority, so you're just rubber stamping everything. Why would the pension fund do that? Who are the transaction advisors? In corporate structure, you don't just hand over…When we sit back and copy blindly to say that the state cannot participate in business, it's worrisome. In any case, what is the track record of Rock City as far as takeovers are concerned? And taking over businesses and improving them is concerned.

“You go for bidding, you have three companies, including Bryan Acheampong's Rock City, at every bit of the bidding process, he was the closest to it. It smacks of insider trading, why are we stupid? You keep insulting us as a people. I don't know why this government thinks that some people are stupid.

“In such a transaction, why is it that Byran Acheampong's Rock City was always closer to the bid? The rest are far off, it doesn't make sense. Let's be realistic, it doesn't add up anywhere…You see how the government is in bed with a sitting member of the cabinet, as a cabinet minister you should have a conscience, you don't meddle in things like this.”

He challenged Rock City Hotel to demonstrate its international credibility by securing a reputable franchise for Ghana.

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