Ghana’s president dismisses a state minister over corruption allegations

Ghana’s President Nana Akufo-Addo on Monday sacked his finance minister over allegations of corruption featured in an upcoming documentary on illegal gold mining.

In a statement, he said the president had “terminated the appointment of the Minister of State in the Ministry of Finance, Mr. Charles Adu Boahne, with immediate effect.”

The fallout from the revelations by a well-known investigative journalist comes as the government is under pressure over a faltering economy and lawmakers have pushed Akufo-Addo to fire Finance Minister Kenneth Ofori-Atta.

The presidential statement said Akufo-Addo’s decision came after he “became aware of the allegations” against Boahne in the documentary “Galamsi Economy”, which is scheduled to be shown on Monday.

Akufo-Addo also referred the case to the prosecution for further investigation.

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Teasers from the revelations show Boahen in what the documentary claims are photos of him trying to solicit $200,000 from potential investors for the vice president to allow them to do business.

Galamsey is a local Ghanaian phrase referring to illegal or unregulated small-scale gold mining operations.

Boahen has not commented on the allegations of harassment.

But before announcing the dismissal, Vice President Muhammadu Baumea said on Monday that he was not aware of any meeting in which Boahen used his name to “sell influence and collect money from supposed investors.”

He wrote on Twitter: “If what the Minister is alleged to have said in the video is accurately portrayed, then his position as Minister of State is not tenable.”

“I will not allow anyone to use my name to engage in corrupt activities.”

The documentary was produced by Anas Aremayaw Anas, whose past performances led to the ex-President of Ghana being banned from football by FIFA and the sanctioning of more than 50 referees across Africa.

He also investigated the country’s judiciary which led to the dismissal of more than 30 high and lower court judges in Ghana due to bribes to drop cases.

The documentary will be shown to the public at the Accra International Conference Center for two days.

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Akufo-Addo has come under increasing pressure after recently opening negotiations with the International Monetary Fund over a potential $3 billion loan to help prop up the country’s economy.

Last month he appealed to Ghanaians to support his efforts to manage a “crisis” as inflation hit 40 percent and the national currency, the cedi, fell sharply.

Lawmakers are investigating Finance Minister Ofori Atta over economic mismanagement and other allegations even though he is leading talks with the International Monetary Fund team on the loan deal.

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