A former Chief Executive of the Kumasi Metropolitan Assembly (KMA), Mr Kojo Bonsu, has welcomed the decision of the assembly to probe his administration.
While maintaining that the assembly’s decision was a normal practice, he insisted that his hands were clean.
“They should go ahead; I have nothing to fear,” Mr Bonsu, who is currently outside the country, told the Daily Graphic on phone yesterday.
In his maiden address to the general assembly last Thursday, the new Mayor, Mr Osei Assibey Antwi, said the assembly would investigate the financial dealings in the establishment of the Rattray Park project and the numerous judgement debts incurred by the past administration.
However, Mr Bonsu was confident that “the investigations would prove that my hands are clean.”
He said he had already asked his former spokesperson, Mr Sammy Gyamfi to issue a statement on his behalf over the issues raised.
When the Daily Graphic reached Mr Assibey-Antwi on phone from his base in Kumasi, he said the probe was not to suggest that Mr Bonsu had misappropriated funds. “It is to establish some facts,” he explained.
In the statement issued by Mr Gyamfi, he said the former mayor found nothing wrong with the decision to investigate the affairs of KMA in relation to the Rattray Park project and the many judgement debts that the assembly was currently saddled with.
“He sees it as normal and necessary for every responsible mayor to embark on such a path so as to understand and appreciate the legal and financial position of the assembly. Almost every past mayor including himself, did same upon assumption of office, hence this is not a new phenomenon,” the statement said.
It said Mr Bonsu was ready to assist the new mayor with explanations and clarifications on the issues at stake.
With reference to the Rattray Park project, the statement said the figures put out by the new mayor were “accurate and precise.”
The statement said Mr Bonsu should be commended for the prudent use of resources in the establishment of the park instead of the attacks on him by certain people.
Giving details, it said the technical experts on the project, in 2013 estimated the cost at $4.4m, including the cost of the land on which it sits. “The land was eventually gotten for free. This, coupled with other factors, made the project cheaper,” it added.
According to the statement, due to constraints of resources, the assembly only budgeted about GH¢5.3 million ($1.2m) for the period between 2013-2016 and was able to pay GH¢5millon.
“The Rotary Park is not only a recreational and tourist destination but one of the biggest sources of IGF for the KMA. Proceeds from the park stand at about GH¢2.3m in only a period of two years and that is a vindication of the bold step Mr Bonsu took in undertaking this historic project,” the statement said.
On complaints about the mounting judgement debts incurred by the KMA, the statement said none of the debts occurred during the tenure of Mr Bonsu.