Trade Ministry to pay GHc1m to former Trade Fair boss

Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry , Carlos Ahenkorah Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry , Carlos Ahenkorah

The Ministry of Trade and Industry is to settle a judgment debt of GHc1,081,000 incurred by the Ghana Trade Fair Authority (GTFA) following legal action taken against the company by its former Chief Executive Officer, Esther Ofori.

This is part of the GHc2,114,062 judgment debt incurred by the Ministry. The ministry also has to contend with a breach of contract with Enege Kakum, a supplier.
According to the Ministry, an amount of GHc320,000.00 out of GHc1,081,000.00 has been paid and they are now waiting for the court to reconcile the figures to take care of what is left.
Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry , Carlos Ahenkorah, disclosed this when he appeared before the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) to respond to questions on the 2016 Auditor General’s Report.
Speaking to media afterward, he said “we have paid about GHc320,000 and we are waiting for the call to reconcile so that we will be able to come up with the final figure.”
“We will put the authority on the back-burner for the time being and see how the ministry can take over this arranged payment for the complainant,” he added.
Esther Ofori was fighting the GTFA for refusing to pay her benefits at the end of her tenure of office.
The court ordered the seizure of some properties of the company and blocked its account.
But Mr. Ahenkorah suggested that the legal wrangling could have been avoided.
“Matters are best resolved when we sit down to consult instead of allowing matters to go to court to allow legal luminaries decide on our fate and that is what we are going to prevent from happening next time around,” he said.
The Deputy Minister said the Ministry had engaged the court to determine the cost of the company’s properties, including vehicles which were auctioned.
This was to enable them to do the necessary reconciliation to pave way for payment of any outstanding debt.
Mr. Ahenkorah added that the Ministry had taken over the debt of the company and would do everything to prevent such occurrences in the future.

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